Courtesy of Howard Baker

Dr. Ann Combs, DVM checks Hobo the Wonder Dog’s microchip during annual exam.

Pet preparedness

Hobo the Wonder Dog’s annual physical and vaccinations is always the first week in June. Pet preparedness for the unexpected is always on our minds. There are many unexpected disasters, but the one affecting most pet owners is losing or being separated from their pet. Whenever Hobo visits with his veterinarian we are diligent to have his microchip checked. There is National Check the Chip Day which is a good idea but; I believe it’s easier having identification checked by your veterinarian during their annual visit and on National Check the Chip Day. We want to stress the importance of microchipping your pet and keeping the registration information updated. A pet owners worst disaster is being separated from their pet.

Remember, a microchip without an accurate registration is not helpful in reuniting you with your pet. Hobo the Wonder Dog always wears a collar with his identification tag with up to date contact information. Hobo is chipped and his registration information is checked and updated at least twice a year: with his annual wellness visit and National Check the Chip Day on August 15th. Having the correct registration information is vital to protect your pet in the event you become separated.

Ohio State University in a study they conducted in shelters found that: 73 percent of owners of stray dogs and cats that had microchips were found. The reasons owners were not found 35 percent were incorrect or disconnected telephone numbers and 10 percent had unregistered microchips, 17 percent were chips not being registered with the manufacturer’s database. The study highlights the importance of having accurate contact information associated with your pet’s microchip and National Check the Chip Day.

Four tips to help reunite a lost pet:

1. Visual identification on your pet’s collars in the form of a ID tag, microchip tag, and rabies vaccination tag

2. Microchip your pets

3. Update contact information on all forms of your pet’s identification yearly

4. Check your pet’s microchip number with the national registry: www.petmicrochiplookup.org

Losing a pet is traumatic and stressful and microchipping your pet increases your odds of being reunited. Hobo the Wonder Dog and I hope you and your pet are never separated, but believe in having all the tools available just in case.

It can get confusing on where to register your pet’s microchip, so use the one animal shelters and veterinarians will search—the one who manufactured your pet’s chip. If you are unsure who manufactured the chip, check the number with the Universal Pet Microchip Lookup Tool: www.petmicrochiplookup.org.

Hobo the Wonder Dog and I hope you will be prepared for any disaster that might separate you from your pet; having a microchip with updated information is the best chance to be reunited. If you already have a microchip, take a few minutes to update your contact information — it could be the difference between lost and found!

Life is better with a dog — woof!

Hobo the Wonder Dog, Your guide to travel, health and fun. Please follow Hobo on Facebook at Hobo the Wonder Dog or contact us at: howard@howardsbaker.com.