The City of Schertz recently passed an ordinance that requires all cat and dog owners within the city limits of Schertz to have their pet microchipped. This ordinance also eliminates the annual requirement for citizens to register their pet with Schertz Animal Services.
The American Humane Society estimates over 10 million dogs and cats are reported lost each year. Unfortunately, a large number of those pets never make it back home, which is largely due to the inability to identify the animal’s owner. One of the most effective means of protecting your pet in this situation is to have them microchipped. This identification method greatly increases the likelihood of your pet being identified and returned to you.
First, what is a “microchip” and how does it work? A microchip is a tiny computer chip that is implanted under your pet’s skin via an injection, similar to your pet getting a vaccination. They contain an individual registration number that is linked to each pet owner’s information. Once implanted, the pet owner’s information is added to a pet registry service that is offered by the microchip manufacturer.
After a pet has been microchipped a handheld microchip reader can then be used to scan the animal for the microchip. The scanner will provide the registry information on the microchip to the person/organization scanning the animal to hopefully obtain the owner’s information.
Benefits of the Microchipping Ordinance:
- Historically, many pet owners have bought their cats and dogs collars that included a tag with the owner’s information. While these were great at that time, they are an outdated means of identifying an animal and its owner. Collars and tags can easily break, fall off, or even be switched between animals. The microchip is permanent and cannot be separated from the pet.
- If your pet is lost, missing, or stolen, a microchip and its registration are definitive proof of animal identification and ownership. This is particularly helpful in the case of stolen pets when ownership might be in dispute.
- A microchip greatly increases the likelihood that a pet will be returned to its owner if lost. Studies show that animals with microchips are returned to their owners at a much higher rate than those without.
- Microchips last the lifetime of your pet.
- There is no longer a requirement for Schertz citizens to register their pets with Schertz Animal Services annually. This saves our citizens time and the cost associated with annual registration.
May is “National Chip Your Pet Month” and we are encouraging all Schertz residents to microchip your cats and dogs so they can easily make their way home if they become lost.
Contact your vet to make an appointment to get a microchip.