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Microchip Basics for New Pet Owners

If you’re new to cat or dog ownership, you may not be familiar with pet microchips. They’re the best way to keep your animal companion properly identified for a lifetime! Here, your Folsom, CA gives you a rundown of the basics.

What is a Microchip, and How Do They Work?

A microchip is a tiny computer chip on which a number is implanted electronically. This number matches the chip manufacturer’s records, where your pet’s contact information is stored. Specialized scanners at vets’ offices and animal shelters can read these numbers; if a lost pet is returned to such a facility, the professionals there can get the pet returned to the rightful owner quickly and easily.

Why Get My Pet a Microchip?

Microchips have several wonderful benefits. The first is that it can’t be removed by a pet. Some animals may be able to chew apart, rip away, or slip off a collar containing ID tags, leaving them undefined. This can’t happen with a microchip; it’s inserted under your pet’s skin and is impossible to remove unless a veterinary professional does so.

Microchips are inexpensive, usually ranging between $25 and $75 for the hardware and procedure. Also, they’re easy to have updated should you move or get a new telephone number. Simply call or email the chip manufacturer, and they’ll update their records in short order.

Can I Track My Pet Using a Microchip?

No. Microchips do not contain GPS technology, and you cannot use one to track your pet’s movements in real time. This sort of technology is available in other devices made for pets, but it is not included with identification microchips at this time.

What’s the Procedure Like?

The microchip itself is housed inside of a small capsule; the whole unit is about the size of a large grain of rice. The capsule is inserted under your pet’s skin, usually behind the neck and in between the shoulder blades, using a specialized syringe. Your pet won’t feel any pain aside from a momentary pinch, and the procedure will be over in a matter of a few minutes. It’s very much like getting a regular vaccination!

How Do I Get Started?

Do you want to get your new pet a microchip? Want to compliment your pet’s existing ID tags with a chip? Set up an appointment with your Folsom, CA veterinarian today to learn more and to get started.

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