They’re furry, and lovable. They’re like members of your family. And now, they come complete with their very own microchip.
Thanks to companies like AVID and HomeAgain, pets are becoming part of an evolving technology that aims to curb animal theft and assist pet owners in finding their furry friends when they’re lost.
Now, almost all vets have a chip scanner as does animal control. So when they pick up strays and they have no collar or rabies tag, they can scan them and look them up in the national database.
There, you’ll find all the information — the owner, a friend of theirs, and the name of the implanter.
WHAT IT MEANS
# A microchip, about the size of a grain of rice and encased in an inert glass covering, is injected into a pet between the shoulder blades, like a vaccine.
# The pet may yelpas they would from an injection, but no long-term effects will be present. The device has no moving parts.
# Pet owners are given formsto fill out and submit with contact information for them and for a friend or relative that lives the furthest distance away, in case of emergency.
# If an animal is recoveredand taken to a vet or shelter, a veterinarian will scan the stray pet to see if a microchip has been implanted.
# When a device is present, a 10-digit code will show on the scanner, and the vet is then directed to call a toll-free hotline to read the number and report the recovered pet.
# The tracking company is then able to reunite the pet with it’s owner.
These tiny trackers aren’t only for use on cats and dogs, either. Pet owners all over the country have had the devices planted into horses, birds, llamas, sheep and even fish. Veterinarians normally charge between $50 and $75 for the chip and to have it implanted. There is additional charge, usually less than $20, to register the pet in the national database.
In cooperation with the HomeAgain company and Pet Pals Northeast, Lambert will be outfitting pets with the chips at a clinic Saturday for $25 (Information:774-7650).