Although you were certain that the rear gate was shut, it didn’t completely latch, and the unthinkable has now occurred. Your dog managed to escape the backyard!
While the majority of pets wear collars with all of your pertinent contact information on them, there is a chance that they could come off. Microchipping technology may be able to help in this situation, give people the much needed peace of mind, and perhaps even save the day.
A microchip is a tiny electronic component that has a special preprogrammed number on it that can be used to identify your pet. Your cat or dog may be given the chip straight in the vet’s office, without the use of anesthetic. It is inserted just beneath the skin.
The microchip, which is about the size of a rice grain, has an ID number that corresponds to the particular chip registry. A scanner will read the chip, turn it on, and provide a special identifying number that can be checked against a database of owner details. (American Veterinary Medical Association, Microchipping FAQ, https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/pet-owners/petcare/microchips-reunite-pets-families/microchipping-faq?fbclid=IwAR013b3byeYB_0MOsLpLTLIUXVRBpu6s8dF83sE47LcMPJEA5-cFWTyd1nk#:~:text=Q%3A%20Why%20should%20I%20have,it%20becomes%20lost%20or%20stolen )
The microchipping technology is already widely used in first-world nations. In fact, some of those countries make it mandatory. This system is used by their governments to more effectively manage the domestic animal population in their countries, particularly in metropolitan areas. It makes registration and monitoring of animals more convenient, more manageable, and more organized. It just goes to illustrate how seriously they take their legal obligations to protect animals.
Benefits of the microchipping system
1. One of the initial procedures when a missing animal is discovered and brought to a veterinarian or a shelter is to check the animal for a microchip. All parties involved can save time by rapidly locating the owner’s contact information by searching the microchip registry after the chip has been identified and scanned.
2. There is no need to replace the microchip after a set period of time because the technology is built to endure the entire lifespan of your pet.
3. You can conveniently get the microchip implanted at your veterinarian’s office. The procedure is quick, done with a hypodermic needle, and is comparable to administering a vaccination to your pet.
4. For the duration of your pet’s life, microchips are frequently implanted with a range of anti-migration capabilities to ensure that they remain firmly in place.
5. There is a good chance that your pet already had a microchip if they were adopted from a shelter for rescued animals.
6. Pets with microchips are more likely to be handed back to their owners. According to one study, dogs with microchips are returned 52.2% of the time while dogs without are only returned 21.9% of the time. Cats were returned 38.5% of the time when they had microchips compared to 1.8% of the time when they didn’t. (Petmate Academy, The Benefits of Microchipping, 4 June 2018)
How is microchipping done and what does it have?
With the aid of a hypodermic needle, it is injected beneath the skin. Even though the needle is a little bit bigger than those used for injection, it doesn’t hurt any worse than a standard injection. A microchip can be installed during a standard veterinary office visit without surgery or anesthesia. The microchip can frequently be installed while your pet is already under anesthesia for a procedure, such as neutering or spaying, if they are already sedated for the operation.
Currently, only identification numbers are stored on pet microchips. It cannot track your animal if it gets lost because the microchip is not a GPS gadget. While your pet’s medical history is not stored on the actual microchip due to current technology, you can keep it in some microchip registration databases for easy access.
Some microchips that are used in research facilities, as well as those that are used to microchip some livestock and horses, also communicate data on the animal’s body temperature.
Regarding privacy, you don’t need to worry. In the event that your pet is located and their microchip is scanned, the manufacturer’s microchip registry will use the information you submit to get in touch with you. You often have the option to choose in or out of receiving additional messages from the manufacturer (such newsletters or adverts). When you register the chip or update your information, the only information about you that is stored in the database is the information you choose to give. There are safeguards in place to prevent a complete stranger from just looking up an owner’s identify.
A microchip’s frequency actually relates to the frequency of the radiowave that the scanner emits when it activates and reads the microchip. The 125 kiloHertz (kHz), 128 kHz, and 134.2 kHz microchip frequencies are a few examples of those utilized in the United States.
Microchips now have a universal standard that has been accepted and advised by the International Standards Organization, or ISO. The goal of the global standard is to provide a uniform identifying system around the world. The ISO standard scanners in Europe would be able to read the microchip of a dog that was implanted with an ISO standard microchip in the U.S. and then traveled to Europe with its owners and became lost. If the dog had a non-ISO microchip implanted and the ISO scanner was not forward- and backward-reading (universal), the scanner might not be able to identify or read the dog’s microchip. It is 134.2 kHz for the ISO reference frequency.
Forward-reading scanners can only read microchips with a 134.2 kHz (ISO standard) frequency; they cannot read microchips with a 125 kHz or 128 kHz (non-ISO standard) frequency. All microchip frequencies are picked up by universal scanners, also known as forward- and backward-reading scanners. The increased likelihood of detecting and reading a microchip, regardless of frequency, is the main benefit of universal scanners. It also does away with the requirement for numerous scanners operating at various frequencies. ((American Veterinary Medical Association, Microchipping FAQ)
If your pet is lost or stolen, having a microchip greatly increases your chances of finding it again—as long as you keep the registration information current. However, having a microchip is not a 100% assurance that you will get your pet back. Better make sure your pet has a collar still and that has updated information.
Editor’s Note: Microchipping is a controversial issue in the Philippines. There are owners who do not want their pets microchipped due to reports of inflammation in the area where the chip was placed or complications due to the procedure (but this is rare, said Fetch by WebMD) , reported cases of cancer in some microchipped dogs, (again, this is reportedly rare, said Fetch), and the fact we do not have the scanning machine to check the microchip in all cities and towns in the Philippines so if your pet wanders in a city with no microchip scanning machine, the authorities will not be able to trace the dog or cat back to you, according to a vet-friend who does not believe in microchipping.