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A microchip is a tiny device that is implanted under your pet's skin and provides permanent identification for them. Unlike a collar and tags, it cannot get lost, and it won't fade. Most vets, including ours here at Sherbrook Animal Hospital in Winnipeg, recommend microchipping your pet.
The microchip itself is a tiny device about the size of a grain of rice. It has no battery and all it stores is a unique identifying number. In order to read the number, a battery-operated device is held over the area of the pet's body where the chip is located, and it scans the chip. The number is then put into a database of owner information to identify your pet. Most veterinarians and shelters have microchip scanners these days.
Microchips are inert devices—that is, they don't actually do anything themselves. Instead, they function like an internal tattoo. This means that microchips are very safe because they have minimal effects on the animal they are implanted in. It also means, though, that they are useless if your information in the database is not up-to-date. It is incredibly important to register your pet's microchip and then update the registry if you move or change phone numbers.
Microchips are implanted using a special hypodermic needle that is a little bigger around than the ones typically used for giving shots. The size of the needle is similar to those used for drawing blood, and most pets seem to find the procedure quite tolerable. If you are concerned, though, it is also common to have pets microchipped while they are under anesthesia for another reason, such as spay or neuter surgery or for a dental cleaning.
Microchips are usually implanted near the middle of the shoulder blades. This is the standard positioning so that vets and shelters know where to scan if a pet comes into their facility. One of the few issues with microchips is that they can migrate in some cases, so you may want to ask our vet to scan your pet's chip regularly and ensure that it is still properly located.
Sherbrook Animal Hospital in Winnipeg, Manitoba wants every lost pet to find their way home. To help make this happen, we encourage all owners to have their pets microchipped and maintain the proper registry information. If you are interested in more information, or if you want to make an appointment to have your pet microchipped, call us at (204) 774-3544 today!
Sign-up using the form or call us at (204) 774-3544 to take advantage of this exclusive offer.
For after hours emergency care please call the Winnipeg Emergency Clinic 204 452-9427.