Category Archives: micro chip

A Microchip Can Bring Your Pet Home

By Eliza Wynn

Uh-oh. Little Bootsie went out the doggie door, and you had no idea someone had left the gate open. Now you can’t find her. If someone else does, will that person be able to find you?

As a loving and responsible pet owner, you want your pet to be safe at all times. In the event that your pet gets loose and starts roaming the streets, getting her back home is essential. Home escapes aren’t the only potential dangers, though; pets can also find themselves alone and vulnerable after accidents and natural disasters. Pets with microchips are much more likely than those without them to be reunited with their owners. This means that if your dog or cat doesn’t have a registered microchip, you’re taking a huge risk.

In early August, a Pomeranian named Koda was reunited with his family in Arkansas after somehow making his way to a shelter in California. Shortly before that, Wobbles the Shih Tzu went home after being missing for about a year. Not to be outdone, a Massachusetts cat named Charlie was recently found 25 miles from home after just 1 day. What do these pets have in common? They all experienced the joy of a happy reunion simply because they had registered microchips.

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Are You Prepared if Your Pet Gets Lost?

By Linda Cole

No matter how careful you are as a pet owner, sometimes the unexpected happens. I’ve had my share of frantic moments racing around the house searching for a pet I feared had gotten outside and was lost. And I have also had those fears come true. Finding a lost pet can be difficult, but if you’re prepared before it happens, you won’t have to waste valuable time searching for what you need before you can start looking for them.

The first thing to remember is, don’t panic. There’s a good chance your pet will be found by someone else or wander back home on their own. However, you don’t want lose valuable searching time by sitting back and waiting to see if your cat or dog can find their way home. One of the best tools you have is knowing your pet’s personality. That makes a big difference in where to start your search, especially for a lost cat.

The more people friendly your cat is, the better chance they have of being found by someone else and taken to a shelter or local vet clinic. A friendly or curious personality, though, can also cause them to wander farther from home than a more fearful cat. The scared/timid feline is more likely to hole up in a place where she feels safe and that’s where she will stay until hunger, thirst or another animal scares her away from the area. She may even ignore your calls and could be hiding somewhere in your yard or anywhere within a block of home.

Dogs can be gone in a flash, especially if they see a rabbit or something else that gets their prey drive in high gear, and they can cover a lot of ground in a short period of time. Both cats and dogs have traveled very long distances, at times, to find their way home after becoming lost, but there’s no guarantee yours can do the same.

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Lost Pet Alert Network Can Help Find a Lost Pet

By Linda Cole

There’s nothing worse than suddenly discovering your pet is missing. I know from experience how hard it is to search for a lost pet when you have no idea which way they went or where on earth they could be. In the past, all you could do was hang posters, talk to neighbors, walk the area around your home, and worry. It may not take the worry away, but there is a newly launched network that may be able to help. The Lost Pet Alert Network may be your best hope if you’re searching for a lost pet.

You can find animal shelters in every community across the country, in rural and city locations. Some are small and others are quite large. Over the last several years, pet populations in shelters have increased because of the slow economy. The Lost Pet Alert Network was launched on December 5, 2011 in an effort to help pet owners find lost pets that have made it into a shelter or rescue organization.

The best tool we have as pet owners that can assure a lost pet’s return is the microchip. Other than a tattoo that can help you identify your pet, a microchip contains pertinent information someone scanning you pet needs in order to return him to you. It has become a practice for animal shelters and rescue organizations to scan pets entering their facilities to see if there is an implanted chip. After all, it’s to their advantage if they can quickly return a pet to his family. Shelters depend on donations to operate and the slow economy has also slowed donations to many shelters across the country, leaving a lot of them struggling with their budgets.

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Why Responsible Owners Microchip Their Pets


By Suzanne Alicie

Pet identification microchips are becoming a common step for pet owners to take in order to protect their pet. A microchip about the size of a grain of rice is inserted under the pet’s skin. This is not a surgical procedure and doesn’t usually require sedation. The microchip is inserted using a large needle, into the area between the pet’s shoulder blades. Many times pet owners have a chip inserted while their pet is being spayed or neutered.

These tiny chips have unique numbers embedded on them, and the owner must register the number which will link the pet to the owner. If your pet happens to get lost, most vets and animal shelters have a scanner to check found pets for microchip numbers. Once the chip is scanned and the number is retrieved, the microchip company can be called and given the chip number. With the chip number it is easy to look in the database and find the owners information in order to get the pet back home safely.

If you travel with your pet, either by air or by car, it is always a good idea to have a microchip implanted in them. Between airline mishaps, and pets that run away at rest areas, the chance of becoming separated or losing your dog or cat while traveling are fairly high.

If your pet is an indoor only animal, you might think there is no need for a microchip, but many times indoor cats and dogs may not wear a collar or tags all the time. This means if something happens and your pet slips out the door, he has no identification to separate him from the other strays that are picked up. With a microchip you stand a much better chance of getting your pet back safe and sound.

You might think that this much technology packed onto a tiny chip implanted in your pet would be expensive, but you may be surprised. The insertion fee varies from vet to vet, but generally costs between $30 and $50. Registration with a microchip company is usually a onetime fee of around $20. There may be an additional fee if you need to change the information at a later date.

There are several microchip companies to choose from, but the two most widely used in the United States are Home Again and AVID. No matter which microchip company you choose, any scanner will indicate the presence of a chip whether it can read the chip or not, so once someone finds your pet and determines that a chip is present it is simply a matter of using a different scanner to read the chip. Additionally, some microchip companies now produce universal scanners and provide them to animal shelters and animal control agencies at no or very low cost.

These microchips often make the news when they help reunite a lost pet with their family, sometimes after many years of being apart. Such was the case recently for a cat named Shusha, who had gone missing and ended up living in a tack room several miles from its home. The woman who owned the tack room took Shusha to the vet to have her scanned for a microchip. Because of the presence of a tiny piece of technology, the Johnson family was reunited with their beloved cat after 3 long years.

The many pleasures our pets bring into our lives make the small expense of inserting a microchip a worthwhile expenditure. Microchipped pets that accidentally become lost are much likelier to be quickly reunited with the family who loves and misses them.

Read more articles by Suzanne Alicie

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.

Pet Identity: Tags and Micro-Chips


By Anna Lee

Human beings have personal identification documents, such as our driver’s license, that we carry around with us. We can prove who we are by showing our identification. Our pets also need some type of identification on them at all times. Since they don’t carry a wallet around with them, what do you do? At the very least you get them identification tags, and possibly take a step further by getting a micro-chip.

Statistics from the American Human Society show that only 17% of lost dogs and 2% of lost cats find their way back to their owners if they are turned into a shelter. Therefore, it is up to you to make sure that your dog or cat is properly identified with a collar, tags and a micro-chip. You want to give your dog or cat the best odds of being returned to you.

You can buy tags and have them engraved at many locations including pet stores, through catalogues and even through your vet’s office. I have seen tag making machines in the common areas of large malls. Abby has had many tags in her lifetime. She started her life as a puppy in New Jersey, so she had her first tag with her name and our address and phone number. We moved to Tennessee and then began a series of new tags with each move.

The information you choose to put on the tag is up to you. On Abby’s last three tags we only had her name and our phone number, which is sufficient information. Her rabies tag, which is also on her collar, has our vet’s name, address and phone number. You can put your address, your cell phone or home phone, your e-mail address; you decide what information you want on the tag. If your dog has a special medical condition you can get a tag made with that information. An example would be if you have a hearing impaired dog. The tag could read: Dixie is hard of hearing but knows hand signals.

If you move or change your phone number, remember to get a new tag. You need to inspect the identification tags as they do wear, become thin and break off, which just happened to one of Abby’s tags recently. Make sure you check the collar and tags at least monthly.

Another form of pet identification is a micro-chip. This is not very expensive and it will give you peace of mind. A micro-chip is the size of a grain of rice, and it contains a number that is assigned to your pet and your pet only. The chip is inserted under the skin between the shoulder blades. It takes a few seconds for a vet to insert a micro-chip. It does not hurt at all and most dogs and cats don’t even feel it.

The number on the microchip is entered into a database such as Central Animal Registry or PETtrac. If your dog or cat gets lost and some kind soul turns them into a shelter or humane society, a worker can run a scanner over the area where micro-chips are implanted and get a reading of the number. The number is then entered into a computer and your name, address and phone number will show on the screen.

A micro-chip is not expensive, and it is worth the peace of mind. We travel back and forth between Tennessee and New Jersey and take other vacations during the year. I like knowing that if Abby gets lost I have a good chance of her being found and returned to me. When we moved last year I contacted the micro-chip company associated with Abby’s chip and gave them my updated information. The information was changed at no additional cost.

We had it done in 2002 and we paid approximately $25 to the vet, plus a one time $20 fee to the micro-chip company. Prices vary by veterinarian but the range is somewhere between $25 – $40 to have the chip implanted and around $20 to have the information entered into the database.

Micro-chips don’t hurt your pet, and can be read at most vet offices. The micro-chip cannot wear out and it is 100 percent safe for your pet. There are no disadvantages to this type of identification.

Make sure your dog or cat is protected with a collar and tags at the very least. If you have a few extra dollars, invest in a micro-chip for added protection. Your pet is depending on you for protection.

Read more articles by Anna Lee

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.

What To Do With a Stray Dog


By Ruthie Bently

Has this ever happened to you? You’re traveling on a country road, a busy interstate or even at your favorite store and you see a dog without their human owner. What do you do? First of all, if you decide to approach this dog, do so with caution. You don’t know how long it has been on its own, and it may have been traumatized by its experience. Though this may be someone’s four-legged baby and might be the most wonderful dog in the world under normal circumstances, it has sharp teeth and could be frightened by what it has been through so far.

A biscuit or a food item may be a good thing to have in your hand, as this will distract their focus and may also endear you to them. You should check to see if the dog has a collar, and hopefully tags as well. You can also check with any neighbors in the area to see if anyone has lost a dog. If you are uncomfortable taking the dog home, then contact the local animal shelter or humane society. Sometimes these are linked to the police department animal control unit. If you want to take the dog home, you should still contact the local shelter or humane society to let them know you found a dog. Giving them as complete a description as you can is important, as this will facilitate getting the dog home sooner.

If you take the dog home with you, they should be provided with food, water and a safe place to rest. Check the local papers every day for listings of a lost dog, as well as with local veterinarians. You can either keep the dog until the owner is found or take them to the shelter after 24 hours. However, if you take the dog to the shelter, check to see what their policies are on euthanasia as some have a seven day limit for keeping lost pets. Ask if they are a “no kill” shelter, and what will happen to the dog if they are not reunited with their owner within a week.

Do your best to make sure the dog gets home by hanging flyers, and place an ad in the local paper (many local papers offer free “found dog” ads). Also make sure the information gets to your local police department and vets, as well as those in the town where you found the dog (if it’s a different city than yours). Many dogs are micro-chipped now, so check with your local shelter or vet to see if they have a universal chip reader. This may also get the dog home sooner.

I had an interesting experience with a lost dog once. Though it took a bit of ingenuity, I was finally able to reunite the dog with his owner. It was early one Sunday morning at the store where I worked as pet department manager. A customer came in and mentioned there was a German Shepherd sitting by the front door. I went out to see the dog; it was waiting patiently so I thought he was waiting for his owner to come out of the store. He seemed friendly so I gave him a pat and went back to work. Little did I know, I would become more involved in this dog’s life.

I checked to see if he had tags on his collar, and he had a rabies tag but no name tag. While this was a bit of a setback, I knew I could still find his owner. You see, the rabies tag had the phone number of the county that issued it. I called the number, and with a bit of research they were able to give me the dog’s name and told me that his rabies vaccination was up to date, even though the tag had been issued more than a year before. Unfortunately the phone number she gave me for the owner was no longer valid, as he had moved since the dog was vaccinated.

The story still has a happy ending. Because I called the county that issued the rabies tag, they were eventually able to get in touch with the owner, and he and his dog were reunited. It turns out the dog lived in Wisconsin and was loaned to a friend in Chicago while his owner went out of town. The problem was the “babysitter” didn’t realize the dog’s commitment to his owner. I am a fan of Sheila Burnford’s book “The Incredible Journey,” and this dog must have been also. He got loose one day while on an outing with the babysitter and decided to go home.

This dog had a lot of heart and just wanted to go home to the person who loved him the best. And isn’t that what we all want in the end? Bless you and yours, be they two or four-legged.

Read more articles by Ruthie Bently

The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.