1st of July is ID Your Pet Day, to spread awareness on the importance of it. Many pets go missing each year for various reasons: a gap in the enclosure, panicking from fireworks celebration or thunderstorm, running off during a walk, etc. Identification can make all the difference if your pet goes missing. Your dog should always have a collar with an ID tag that includes your name, current phone number, and any other important information (such as medical conditions).
Unfortunately, collars and ID tags are not foolproof and dogs and cats can still get lost. Collars can break or fall-off, leaving your beloved pet among the countless, unidentified lost strays. Many of these tragedies occur every day worldwide, but the fact is that it can easily be prevented with the use of microchips*. However, keep in mind that a microchip is only as good as the information you link it to. If it isn’t up to date, it won’t help get your pet home! If you’ve changed any of your contact information (phone, address, even email) make sure you update that information immediately. ID Your Pet Day is your yearly reminder to double check that all your pet’s identification information is correct!
What are microchips?
A microchip is an implantable computer chip that contains a unique identification number. This number is not much use on its own, and needs to be linked to your information in a regional database. In Kenya, that database is kept by the East African Kennel Club.
Microchips are no bigger than a grain of rice. They are placed under your pet’s skin with a needle and syringe, not much different from a routine vaccine.
Unlike collars and ID tags, a microchip can never break or fall off. They work by receiving a radio signal from a scanner and transmitting the encoded chip identification number back to the scanner. With the chip identification number in hand, the vital contact information is only a phone call away: +254 (0)718923732 (EAKC)
A microchip only carries its unique ID and can NOT be traced using GPS. They are a very reliable method of identification, but they ultimately depend on the information that you give. So remember to update your information and provide multiple emergency contacts in case your pet gets lost while you are out of town.
Heaven forbid, but if your pet does go missing, take the following steps:
- Contact KSPCA to file a Lost Report.
- Post a detailed description of your pet and area where your pet was lost from (and last seen) on social media: Dog Lover s Nairobi/ East Africa Kennel Club
- Talk to people on the street in the area where your dog was last seen
- Be diligent. Stop by KSCPA as often as you can and walk through the kennels on your own to see if your pet was brought in. As the main shelter, KSPCA is often overwhelmed and bursting at the seams.
- By making sure your pet has a microchip, you are giving yourself and your pet the best chance of a speedy, happy reunion. Just ask Toffee! She and her owners learned the hard way what it meant not being micro-chipped…
Toffee vs Microchip: 0-1
Through the kindness of strangers, Toffee was kept from getting hit by a car and they notified TNR Trust to come and help catch the little rascal. After giving us a bit of a merry chase through the woods while trying to dodge ISK School traffic, we were able to catch her and bring her to the vet for a check-up. Toffee had a nasty looking wound that looked like an injury from barbed wire, but she was fine once it was healed up. She also received rabies and tetanus shots and was dewormed.
As she did not have a microchip, collar or tag, we posted her on our Facebook page and other forums. The owners saw the poster and contacted us. They footed the full vet bill and were made aware that if Toffee would have had a microchip, they would have been reunited much quicker.
SO DON’T DELAY! Microchip your pet and register your details now on: https://eastafricakennelclub.com/eakc-services/microchipping/