Apart from the fact that it is mandatory in most states in Australia, it just makes good sense. Let’s illustrate with the story of Tilly! Tilly was being taken care of by a friend, and unfortunately the neighbor had a rather dominant cat called Scoobie who was not happy when the new cat next door. Upon returning home one night, the louvre window had been prised open, Scoobie was sitting on the bed, and Tilly was no-where to be seen. The search was extensive in the area, but to no avail. Of course you always hope that someone was loving her, but feared the worse. Then …. 4 months later, came the call from the vet that Tilly had been dropped off by a very kindly person. She had obviously roamed far and wide, and was a bit the worse for wear, but at least alive.
Of course, it was the microchip that enabled Tilly to be reunited with her grateful owner.
What is a microchip?
It’s a tiny capsule with a computer chip that has a unique identification number which links your contact details on the National Pet Register database.
Does it hurt when it is inserted?
It’s always done by someone qualified for the job, and only takes a few minutes to complete the procedure. It is no more than an injection into the loose skin between the shoulder blades.
It’s important to give time for the chip to settle in, so once the procedure has taken place you should not touch it for around 48 hours, and make sure your pet doesn’t go swimming or have a bath.
What happens if my pet goes missing?
Whilst we all hope that this doesn’t happen, and we take steps to avoid a missing pet, some of them can be amazing escape artists and especially with cats, they can be more vulnerable if you move as they are included to try and return to the old place. If it does happen, naturally you go through all the procedures to alert your neighbors to keep a look out and advise the local vets. If your pet is found, and there is no tag on the collar, then hopefully the finder would take the pet to the vet, or call a council ranger.
They will pass the scanner over the microchip, which reveals the ID number – then they would contact the National Pet Register so that they can locate you.
Regardless of whether it is mandatory or not (and it is in most States), it’s simply another measure of security for your fur friend. Microchips are safe and a very effective way to re-unite you with your pet should he or she go walkabout. But remember it is important to keep your details up to date, so that you can be located quickly.
For further information call National Pet Register on 1300 REG PET or visit www.petregister.com.au