We have quite the pet family. So far, you’ve met Arie, my White German Shepherd, and Shady, our lab mix. We also have two cats and a tank filled with fish, but you’ll have to meet them later. The point of this post isn’t how many animals we have, but how devastating it would be if we ever lost one of them.
When I was little, I grew up next door to my grandparent’s land, and in a rural area with lots of wildlife, it’s not a rare occurrence for a pet to wander off and not return. I was heartbroken when my cat disappeared, and positively devastated when one met a nasty end thanks to another animal. The wildlife wasn’t the only threat to my pet’s safe return; people also posed a danger. My family would give the dog a bath, and then let him/her run outside without their collar on while they dried. I was always terrified that someone would find them in that brief time, think they were homeless, and take them in or take them to a shelter.
With the amazing progress of modern technology, we now have an amazing invention that helps relieve that worry: The microchip. Microchips are now readily affordable and available, so you can get one easily for your pet at a shelter or your vet. While they may not seem so important if you have a collar and tag for your dog, remember: Tags and collars can break off, get snagged, or wear so that your information isn’t clear. Microchips go beyond that to ensure that your pet is always marked with the address for their home, and have helped some animals find it home in extreme cases, like when one dog made the amazing 750 MILE trip home after being separated from his owner, all because someone checked his microchip.
Still, there are some things you need to have in place in addition to getting your pet a microchip to ensure they’ll make it home:
- Keep an ID tag and vaccine tags on your dog at all times, even they have a microchip. These are visible notifications that immediately let others know that your dog/cat has a home while also assuring people that they are up to date on their shots.
- Make sure that the information stored in your microchip is up to date. After all, someone returning your dog to the address you had four years ago isn’t exactly getting him/her home.
- Keep a close eye on your pet when outdoor and take precautions to ensure that they don’t get lost in the first place. Being a watchful pet parent will help your pet feel safe and be safe.