Video Guide: How The Microchip Cat Implantation Process Works
The following video is a useful guide to microchip implantation. It will provide you with a better understanding of the procedure itself:
In conclusion, the main difference between a microchip cat identification implant and a cat GPS tracker is the possibility of actively searching for your cat, in case she runs away or gets lost. The only device that gives you this ability over an unlimited range is the GPS tracker, since it offers the possibility of real-time tracking.
How To Tell If A Cat Is Microchipped
Having your cat microchipped is one of the best ways to ensure that you are reunited with them if they should ever go missing. Collars with identification tags are also helpful, but these collars can get snagged on things and come off. If a cat is found without a collar and isnt microchipped, it can be extremely difficult to find their owner. Most indoor cats dont wear collars regularly.
If you find a cat without a collar, you may be wondering how to find their owner. Provided that no lost cat signs are hanging up nearby, you will want to check to see if the cat is microchipped.
Lets look at what a microchip is and the ways that you can tell if a cat has one.
Should You Microchip Your Cat
Its good practice to have all of your cats fit with a microchip once they are old enough. Since outdoor cats are most at risk of being lost or stolen, microchips are especially important for cats allowed outside. In addition to a microchip cat implant, a GPS tracker for cats is recommended .
In many countries, cat microchips are regulated and required by law. Should a non-identifiable feline be found lost on the streets, it could even be euthanized. Hence, microchipping your cat is a basic safety precaution that should be taken by all cat owners.
Are you relocating with your kitty? Remember, a microchip is only useful when you keep the contact information for the ID registration up to date.
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How To Scan A Community Cat
- Scan as soon as possibleremember, many eartipped cats are also microchipped!
- Working with a community cat in a trap? Try to scan the cat while she is in the trap. If your facility has a wand scanner, this can be inserted into the trap for a safe and clear reading.
- If no wand scanner is available, try to get the handheld scanner as close to the cat as possible. Keep in mind that this approach may be made less effective by the metal of the trap.
- If youre in a shelter, dont waitscan community cats the same day they arrive!
Examples of commonly used universal scanners
- WandScan 900
- The Home Again Universal Worldscan
Where Can I Get My Pet Microchipped
Many veterinarians and some animal shelters implant microchips for a small fee. Butand this is very importantjust getting a microchip isn’t enoughyou also need to register your pet with the microchip company.
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How Does Microchipping Work
A small chip is inserted under your cats skin usually by your vet, a local authority or a trained and insured member of an animal welfare organisation, such as Cats Protection. This microchip gives your cat their own unique code.
If your cat were to go missing, the microchip would be scanned with a microchip scanner and matched to your contact details, which are kept on a cat microchip database.
What Information Is Stored In A Pet Microchip
A pet microchip stores the identification numbers of the animal. When an unidentified animal is taken to a vet clinic or a shelter, they will immediately scan the animal for a microchip.
The information the scanner will pick up can be used to contact you if your pet was lost and was scanned. Some microchips provide the option to store your pets medical information too, if you want to opt into this.
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What Are Microchips For Cats
A microchip for cats is an identification tool an electronic chip of the size of a grain of rice, implanted under the skin of your kitty. The unique chip contains an ID number for identifying the owner of the cat, in case your feline friend gets lost. The chip is injected carefully between the shoulder blades of your cat and the painless procedure lasts only a few seconds.
Once the chip is implanted, it works in case your cat goes missing, and is brought to a vet or shelter. There they will be able to scan the microchip to identify, and hopefully, contact you, the owner of the lost cat. Your contact details must be kept up-to-date in the database, otherwise the microchip might be ineffective in reuniting you with your cat.
â ï¸ Microchips alone are not useful in the active search for your lost cat, and microchips cannot help you find your cat in real-time.
With a microchip, you rely on a stranger to find, retrieve and bring your lost cat to a vet or shelter, then contact you. However, in general, microchips for cats are a more reliable form of identificationthan collar tags, which can fall off or become illegible.
What Maintenance Is Required After Implantation
Essentially none. The microchips themselves do not require ongoing care, although you do need to keep your contact information up-to-date in the database.
In the event you notice any irregularities near the site of the microchip, such as oozing or swelling, contact your veterinarian.
It is not an infallible system. Although rare, microchips can fail and become undetectable. Improper scanning technique can also lead to failure to detect a microchip.
Some of the animal-related factors that can interfere with the microchip detection include:
- animals that cant stay still or struggle while being scanned
- the presence of long, knotted hair at or near the microchip site
- excessive fat deposits in the area of implantation
- a metal collar
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Do All Shelters Scan Lost Cats For Microchips
To our knowledge, just about every animal shelter and veterinarian in the United States has the RFID devices to detect a microchip for cats. However, there are various cat microchip manufacturers, and because of this not all RFID scanners can detect every microchip for cats. Therefore, shelters and veterinarians may keep several different scanners on-hand to detect different cat microchip brands. Since cat microchips can migrate, it is a good idea to ask your veterinarian during each checkup to scan the pet microchip to make sure it is still reading, and is also still located where it should be.
How And Where Are Microchips Placed
Microchips are implanted just under the skin, usually right between the shoulder blades. This is done with a large-bore needle and doesn’t require anesthesia.
Each microchip contains a registration number and the phone number of the registry for the particular brand of chip. A handheld scanner reads the radio frequency of the chip and displays this information. An animal shelter or vet clinic that finds your pet can contact the registry to get your name and phone number.
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How Much Are Pet Microchip Scanners
Currently, DIY pet microchip scanners can be bought for as little as $10, but some are on the market for over $300. These more expensive options often provide a tracking service too, allowing you to find your own pet with the scanner if they are out of sight.
However, if youre not looking to spend that much on a scanner, the cheaper options are still able to scan FDX-B microchips, which are the standard chip for pets. These often connect to a free mobile app, which will give you all the details they can find on the chip.
One of the most popular Bluetooth pet scanners, the Halo Microchip Scanner retails for about $50. Its the one we recommend. You can pick it up .
Watch this demo video of the Halo in action.
This one can read FDX-A microchips, as well as the more common FDX-B, so it is worth considering whether it is worth paying the extra for this slightly more effective scanner, or whether this will not be necessary.
What Are The Risks Associated My Pet Could There Be Microchip Complications For My Dog Or Cat
Yes, but the number is extraordinarily small. The British Small Animal Veterinary Association maintains a database of adverse reactions to microchips. Since the database was started in 1996, over 4 million animals have been microchipped and only 391 had any reported adverse reactions.
Migration of the microchip from its original implantation site is the most common problem reported. Other reported issues, such as failure of the microchip, hair loss, infection, swelling, and tumor formation, were reported in much lower numbers.
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Does Microchipping Hurt Cats
Since microchips actually get inserted under your cats skin, youre probably wondering if it hurts. Luckily, it shouldnt be too painful.
A microchip is about the same size as a grain of rice, so in order to get it under your cats skin, it requires a larger needle than the one your cat gets their vaccinations with, Dr. Bonk said. However, it shouldnt feel any worse than getting blood drawn, and there shouldnt be any lasting pain or discomfort.
How Do I Find A Lost Cat With A Microchip
Losing your cat is a situation no one wants to go through. You might have lived with the cat for years, so losing them can affect you emotionally. Since cats are territorial in nature, their disappearance would mean that they are trapped, injured, or even deceased in their territory.
There are also chances that your cat may have been moved out of your area. Regardless of the reason, the most important thing is to know how to track and get it back.
Many pet owners have their cats or dogs microchipped. With a microchip, its easy for the person who finds the cat to contact the owner. Before looking at how you can find the cat with a microchip, lets look at how a microchip in a cat works.
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How Can You Scan A Pet Microchip
So, traditionally, the only option would be to take an animal to the vet to have their microchip scanned. But now, companies are bringing out ways of scanning a pet microchip at home.
There is not yet a phone app that will allow you to read a pets microchip. A chip can only be detected by a scanner or chip reader designed to pick them up.
These scanners allow you to scan a pet, and the device will display their microchip number, as well as any databases that the pet is registered with. If youre lucky, the owners contact details might also be able to be found in this way, so that they can be contacted about their pet instantly.
A pets microchip is usually inserted around a pets shoulder blades, so move the DIY pet scanner around this area to pick up a microchip quickly. If a microchip is detected, the identification number, and any other details about the animal and its home, will show up on your scanner.
Can Microchips Malfunction
Yes, just like any electronic device, microchips can malfunction and stop working. To make sure your cats microchip is still functioning properly, ask your vet to scan it at your cats routine checkups. This way, if theres an issue with the chip, youll know about it and be able to get a new, functional one for your cat.
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Why Use Trackers For Cats
About 15% of felines will be lost at one point. Yet, according to the ASPCA, only 75% of cats get reunited with their owners and homes. As soon as a cat enters a sanctuary, its possibilities of returning to its owners drop to 2%. Fewer stray felines make it home as compared dogs who stray.
It’s heartbreaking to lose a pet, so let us talk about some of the available technology to keep our felines safe.
How Pet Microchips Work
Microchips can be inserted by veterinarians. Its a simple procedure where a veterinarian uses an injection to insert the chip between a cats shoulder blade. Its rare for the microchip to move around the body because the muscle tissue typically bonds with the microchip to keep it in place.
Microchips usually last for about 25 years. They cant completely replace pet ID tags for several reasons. First, different microchip companies may use different types of microchips that are compatible with a limited selection of scanners. So, if an animal shelter doesnt have a scanner thats compatible with your cats microchip, it wont pick up the microchip.
Animal shelters can also be swamped and busy. So, a worker could accidentally miss the microchip during a scan, and its unlikely that theyll go back again to check for a microchip in the same cat.
Therefore, its best to use both a collar with ID tags and a microchip. Both these items will increase the chances of successful reunification.
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How To Microchip Your Cat
This article was co-authored by Pippa Elliott, MRCVS. Dr. Elliott, BVMS, MRCVS is a veterinarian with over 30 years of experience in veterinary surgery and companion animal practice. She graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1987 with a degree in veterinary medicine and surgery. She has worked at the same animal clinic in her hometown for over 20 years.There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 24,168 times.
Microchips are permanent devices that make it easier to locate your cat if he is stolen or runs away. Breakaway collars and ID tags are helpful, but these can easily come off. A microchip provides a more secure and specific method than relying on the kindness of strangers to return your cat, and it can never fall off. If you want to help protect your cat, have him microchipped.
Which Microchip Registry Is My Pet Is On
There are many microchip registries. To check which registry your pet is listed with, use the following steps:
If you require further information or help on microchipping, please call 03 9224 2222.
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Should Kittens Get Microchip Ids
It used to be that unless you had an identification tag on your cat your chances of finding the cat if he or she went missing were slim to none. With modern technology, however, thats changing. Although some people may be opposed to microchipping their cats because of religious or moral reasons, having your cat microchipped will help animal shelters and animal control officers reunite you with your cat if ever he or she becomes lost.
Is There Anything Else I Should Know
Millions of cats get lost every year, and cats that do not have microchips have less than a 5% chance of being reunited with their families. Cats with microchips were found to be more than twenty times as likely to be reunited with their families. The main reasons that owners were not found if the cat was microchipped, were that the telephone number was incorrect or disconnected, or the owners did not return the phone call or letter from the finder.
“Cats with microchips were found to be more than twenty times as likely to be reunited with their families.”
To help you keep your cat as safe as possible, make sure that your cat has a microchip and an ID tag, and that you have a clear photograph of your cat showing any unique markings. If your cat does get lost, you should distribute flyers that include your cats photograph and contact information, contact your local humane societies or animal shelters, alert your veterinarian, and advertise your lost cat on social media.
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Microchip Cat Implant Vs Gps Tracker: Which Is Best For My Fluffy Friend
So now you know the main features and uses of cat microchips and GPS tracking devices for felines. So which one should you go for? Well, the answer is: both! Because when it comes to the safety of your kitty, nothing is too much.
Remember: Having your cat microchipped might be a mandatory regulation in your country, but unfortunately, this wonât be enough in case kitty runs away.
In comparison with a microchip, having a GPS cat tracking collar attached to your felineâs neck will definitely help you to find your cat, in case she gets lost. And in real-time! So keep your kitty safe with both a microchip, and a GPS tracker.