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Worried Your Pet Will Get Lost or Stolen? Invest in Pet Identification
Date:4/7/2008

SACRAMENTO, Calif., April 7, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- Many pet owners take their animals for granted thinking they'll always be at their side. But even the most loyal pets can wander, break loose or become victims of theft. Owners are left heartbroken knowing that if they had made a simple investment, there could be a chance of reuniting with their pet.

"We cannot stress enough the importance of pet identification to guard against the agony of losing a pet forever," said California Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) President Jeff Smith, DVM. "Outfitting a pet with a collar and imprinted tag is a good first step, but inserting a microchip is the best means of permanent identification and significantly increases the likelihood of pets being reunited with their owners."

Studies show one in three pets will get lost during their lifetimes and without pet identification, 90 percent will not make it home. When Hurricane Katrina forced the evacuation of New Orleans, tens of thousands of pets were left behind, many with no identification tags. While the CVMA recommends collars and tags be worn at all times, they can easily slip off between the time the pet breaks out of the yard and ends up in a shelter.

With National Pet Identification Week being celebrated the third week in April, veterinarians, local SPCAs and humane societies are making a strong push to educate owners about the importance of microchipping and its long-term effectiveness in identifying animals and reuniting them with their owners.

"Many owners may be fearful of microchip implants, but it is a relatively painless procedure that will not affect a pet physically or behaviorally," added Dr. Smith.

Microchipping involves inserting an electronic capsule about the size of a grain of rice under the pet's skin. The chip is embedded with a unique alphanumeric identifier that contains information for contacting the relevant registry when scanned with an electronic reader. Pe
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SOURCE California Veterinary Medical Association
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