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A great opportunity is available April 27 at the 2013 Los Alamos Dog Jog, a $20 reduced fee microchip clinic.
Veterinarians from Animal Clinic of Los Alamos have donated their time and expertise to implant the microchips and Friends of the Shelter is very appreciative of their participation.
The fee includes the registration of the microchip to a database that can be read by shelters and veterinary clinics throughout the United States.
No sign up is required ahead of time, just stop by Chamisa School in White Rock from 9-10:30 a.m. The clinic is open to the public, even if you aren’t registered for the Dog Jog.
The best reason to have your animal microchipped is the improved chance that you’ll get your animal back if it becomes lost or stolen. Disasters where animals become displaced, you leave your pet with a sitter and the animal escapes, dogs that run away during thunderstorms or 4th of July fireworks, auto accidents, these are all times when your animal can become lost.
A microchip is a small, electronic chip enclosed in a glass cylinder that is about the same size as a grain of rice.
It is injected under the skin using a hypodermic needle and is no more painful than a typical injection, although the needle is slightly larger than those regularly used for injections. No surgery or anesthesia is required. No maintenance is needed, although you do have to keep your contact information current in the microchip registration database.
Ideally, the microchip should be scanned during your animal’s yearly checkup to make sure that it is still in place and working as it should.
Only 361 adverse reactions have been reported since 1996 in a database of over 4 million animals.
Of these reactions, migration of the microchip from its original implantation site is the most common problem reported.
Other problems, such as failure of the microchip, hair loss, infection, swelling and tumor formation, were reported in much lower numbers.
The benefits of microchipping animals definitely outweigh the risks. Further reading is available online at: avma.org/issues/microchipping/microchipping_bgnd.asp.
Microchips are great for permanent identification that is tamper-proof, but nothing replaces a collar with up-to-date identification tags.
Your pet’s rabies tag should always be on its collar, so people can quickly see that your pet has been vaccinated for this deadly disease.
When an animal is found and taken to a shelter or veterinary clinic, one of the first things they do is look for a microchip. The microchip transmits an identification number to a scanner. If a microchip is found, and if the microchip registry has accurate information, they can quickly find the animal’s owner.
The microchip databases are online or telephone-accessed databases, and are available every day of the week.