A study of more than 7,500 stray animals at shelters showed that dogs without microchips were returned to their families 22% of the time, whereas microchipped dogs were returned to their families 52% of the time. For microchipped animals that weren't returned to their owners, most of the time it was due to incorrect owner information (or no owner information) in the microchip registry database – so don't forget to register and keep your information updated. This is what Check the Chip day is all about.
Created by the American Animal Hospital Association and the American Veterinary Medical Association with support from HomeAgain, check the chip day serves as a reminder to pet owners to check and update their pet’s microchip registration information. Microchips offer an effective way to identify lost pets and reunite them with their families. This is only possible, though, if the microchip information is correct and if the chip was registered in the first place. This day brings awareness to microchipping your pets and bringing more lost pets home safe.
A microchip is a small, electronic chip that is inside a glass cylinder and it is about the same size as a grain of rice. It is activated when a scanner passes over the area where the microchip is placed and the radiowaves put out by the scanner activate the chip. There is an identification number that appears onto the screen of the scanner.
The microchip is injected under the skin using a hypodermic needle. It is a little more painful than a typical injection, but no surgery or anesthesia is required- it can be implanted at a regular vet visit.
Microchips only display identification numbers, and are not able to track your pet like a GPS. When an animal is found and taken to a shelter or vet clinic, one of the first things that they do is scan the animal for a microchip. If they find a microchip and if the information they look up is correct, the animal’s family can quickly be found.