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Check the Chip Day and safeguarding pets with microchips

Check the Chip Day reminds pet owners to microchip their pets and make sure registrations are current.
Check the Chip Day reminds pet owners to microchip their pets and make sure registrations are current.
Susan Stokes

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) have joined together to create “Check the Chip Day” which falls on August 15, 2014. The day is meant to remind pet owners to have their pets microchipped and to keep the registration information up-to-date at all times.

At St. Francis Animal Hospital in Las Vegas, for example, microchipping is a priority and one of the services Dr. David Drake, DVM, is urging pet owners to take advantage of. Research shows that without a microchip, 90 percent of lost pets are never reunited with their owners.

How a microchip works

A microchip is a device no bigger than a grain of rice and contains a unique serial number. This serial number corresponds with the pet owner's contact information which is stored in a secure database that approved veterinary hospitals and animal shelters have access to.

A veterinarian simply injects the microchip under the skin on the pet’s back with a larger gauge hypodermic needle. It feels much like a simple vaccination to the pet.

"A pet owner's private information is completely secure," said Dr. Drake in a recent press release by St. Francis Animal Hospital. "We must first scan the microchip and then log into the database in order to match the serial number up with the pet owner. Once we have done this, we can contact the pet owner.”

Microchipping is an easy and safe procedure. Visit the animal hospital’s website to learn more about microchipping your pet.

Update your pet’s information on “Check the Chip Day”

The American Veterinarian Medical Association (AVMA) has made available many resources for pet parents and veterinarians to use to make "Check the Chip Day” a success. Visit the website page for advice, podcasts and tools.

Need help trying to locate your own pet’s registry? Try the American Animal Hospital Association's Universal Pet Microchip Lookup Tool, an internet-based application that is linked to the registries of the majority of microchip manufacturers and allows a quick database search of any microchip made by these manufacturers.

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