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Essentially, microchips are computer chips about the size of a grain of rice. Easily implanted under your pet's skin by a hypodermic needle, microchips provide permanent identification that won't wear out, fade, or get lost if the pet runs away. Special scanners find the microchip and can translate into a specific ID code. These unique numbers can then be found on a database and, with luck, the owners can be contacted and the family will be together again. For this reason all pets adopted out through our local SPCA are microchipped prior to being adopted. Commonly when someone finds a pet roaming free they collect them and bring them to the humane society or contact a bylaw officer. When a lost pet is brought into the humane society or our clinic they are scanned for a microchip. Each year several pets get returned to their rightful owners because they were microchipped.
Facts about Microchips:
- Microchips are small computer chips about the size of a grain of rice. They have unique ID numbers that can be read by electronic scanners.
- While there is the ISO international standard for chip frequencies (our clinic and the SPCA both use this type of chip), there are three additional frequencies of microchips in use, especially in North America, and unfortunately not all scanners can read all 4 types of microchips.
- Microchips are wonderful and powerful tools to help keep our pets safe, but until certain issues are resolved, this high tech pet ID is not fool-proof and should be supplemented with additional forms of identification such as old fashioned collars with ID tags.