Animals get lost for a variety of reasons and many folks whose pet is microchipped assume that if the animal is lost or stolen it will be returned. Well, some are, sometimes even years after they disappeared. But many aren't. And as Jan keeps telling local folks, the chip is worthless if the shelter doesn't scan or doesn't scan properly. It's also worthless if the owner does not register the chip or does not keep the information updated. Many a microchipped pet has been euthanized because either the owner or the shelter was derelict in protecting the animal.
In the interest of time, we stole ... er, borrowed this from Jan's September Paws column for the local Humane Society (not the shelter). It's posted on UpsonPets.com. We don't think she'll mind and if she does, you'll all protect us, won't you? Anyway ....
Last month I reminded you to not rely solely on a microchip for the return of a lost pet. If the shelter or vet does not scan animals, the microchip will not be found. If the animal is improperly scanned, the microchip will be missed. Chips can and do migrate to other areas of the body from where implanted and in rare cases are implanted improperly and fall out.
Let’s suppose your lost pet is scanned at the shelter, the microchip is found and read, the shelter checks the database for your information so they can contact you and … Oops. The database is blank. Many either don’t bother to register or forget to. You are not automatically entered into a database. You must register the chip number and your contact information. If your information changes for any reason, it is your responsibility to update it. So be sure to keep the information current. Some pets have been returned many years after they were lost.
You can’t remember if you registered the chip? Or you have lost the paperwork? There are six U. S. databases. To find out which one you are registered with, take your pet to a vet or shelter to have your pet scanned to get the microchip number. Go online to CheckTheChip.com and enter that number. It will search and tell you which database to contact. Go to that website and check your information, making any necessary changes. If it isn’t there, register the microchip number before you forget.
Be sure to print the information and put it in your pet’s file with all his vet information. You will need this if your pet is lost, and a shelter might require you bring paperwork to verify this chip number belongs to your cat or dog.
We read two articles today that reminded us of this subject, so we thought this might be a good time to remind your humans. One was a warning from a shelter. If we remember correctly, something like 40% forget or don't bother to register and a very large percent don't update their information. Many shelters will not or can not invest the time to try to track down an owner who has been negligent or forgotten to register new information.
The other reminder was a positive article from Arizona: New Tool to help Valley sheriff's posse locate lost pets.. Many of you undoubtedly know Phoenix, AZ and the surrounding Valley area have a large number of annual winter "snowbird" visitors and many of them bring their pets.
Hope you all have a good day. Today and tomorrow Jan will spend a few hours outside the local Wal-mart distributing Buddy Poppies for the Veteran's of Foreign Wars. Veteran's Day is the 11th, next Wednesday. So if you happen to see her (or anyone else distributing poppies for a veteran's group), we hope you will take a moment to say hello and donate a green paper or more for a poppy. The VFW poppies are made by disabled veterans and the proceeds are used to help veterans in the local community.
Crystal, Cotton, Merci, Cyndi, Percy, Cameron, Buddy, Rusty & Sam