Ensuring Pet Safety: The Importance of Microchipping Your Pet

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, an estimated 10 million dogs and cats are lost or stolen in the United States every year. This staggering statistic serves to remind us of the importance of microchipping our pets. May is National Microchip Your Pet Month, and now is a great time to remember the importance of microchipping our pets and the need to maintain up-to-date registered information. In this month’s blog, we will delve into the story of Macy, a Boxer who went missing during the 2023 Super Bowl festivities in Kansas City. Despite being lost for a few days, Macy’s microchip led to her happy reunion with her family in the end.

Macy’s story

Macy is a 5-year-old rescue boxer who is sweet but anxious. She entered her owners’ lives as a “Covid puppy” at a time when many pet parents faced challenges ensuring proper socialization while adhering to safety guidelines.

In 2023, when the Philadelphia Eagles played the Kansas City Chiefs in the Super Bowl, Macy’s parents traveled with her to Kansas City to watch the game with family. After the Chiefs’ victory, in the commotion of fireworks, cheers, and music, Macy escaped into an unfamiliar city. The elation of celebrating and being surrounded by loved ones turned to anguish for Macy’s owners, who were confronted with a nightmare they had never imagined. Despite being a sweet dog, Macy’s inherent anxiety and occasional fearfulness rendered her unwilling to approach strangers, further complicating the search efforts.

One of the first things Macy’s parents did was call her microchip company to alert them that she was lost. This alert initiated a widespread broadcast of Macy’s information to local shelters, veterinary clinics, and individuals registered under the same microchip provider. After searching through the night, Macy’s owners took to social media to continue the search, utilizing websites like Facebook and Nextdoor.

After five days, the microchip company’s alerts helped to connect Macy’s owners with a group of “trappers” – ordinary people, including a Mailman, who volunteer their time to track down missing pets. Within 24 hours of connecting with these trappers, Macy was reunited with her family and returned home.

Macy’s escape imparted a crucial lesson to her owners: the importance of ensuring that your pet’s microchip information remains current. Macy’s owners had moved since she was registered and had recently updated the phone number registered to her chip. If the information had been out of date, and Macy’s chip had been scanned by a shelter or veterinary office, they may have had inaccurate information & wouldn’t have been able to contact her owners. This is a reminder to not only chip your pet for their safety but take the time to check your pet’s registration information every so often and keep it up to date!

What is microchipping?

Microchipping is a permanent form of identification for our pets, which enables owners to reliably find and reunite with their lost pets. A microchip is a tiny electronic chip, about the size of a grain of rice, which is implanted under the skin of a pet. When scanned, this chip reveals unique identification information linking them to their owner’s contact information.

The procedure to microchip your pet is quick and relatively painless. Our team will use a needle to inject the chip beneath your pet’s skin in a location where it will remain for the duration of your furry friend’s life. Unlike other forms of identification for your pet, such as collars and tags, microchips do not require any physical maintenance, nor can they be tampered with.

Microchipping your pet is one of the most effective ways to ensure they are returned home if lost.

How to get your pet microchipped

The first step is to schedule an appointment with us! Please give us a call at our phone number to book your pet’s microchipping appointment, and we will take it from there!

Registering your pet’s microchip

Registering and maintaining up-to-date information for pet microchips is extremely important in ensuring the identification tool’s effectiveness. A microchip is only as useful as the information it contains; therefore, pet owners must register their contact details with the microchip company’s database and take care to update any changes, such as address or phone number. When you get your pet microchipped, you will be provided with all the necessary information to accurately register your pet. If your pet comes from a previous owner, they should provide you with information on updating the registration. If you are not provided with the needed information, come see us at our hospital and we will help find a solution. In the event that a pet becomes lost from its owner, such as in Macy’s story, accurate microchip information greatly increases the chances of a reunion.

As we head into spring and summer, and our pets are spending more time exploring the outdoors, National Microchip Your Pet Month serves as a timely reminder of the importance of microchipping and keeping our pet’s information up to date. Macy’s story illustrates how a simple microchip can be an invaluable tool in reuniting lost pets with their families. Let Macy’s reunion serve as inspiration to prioritize this part of responsible pet ownership, ensuring that our pets are always protected, no matter where life may take them.