Microchipping Your Pet: What You Need to Know

Microchips are being implanted in pets by animal shelters, breeders, and vets for identification purposes. Microchips are also being implanted by folks who have taken a microchipping course. All kinds of animals are being microchipped (ferrets, fish, elephants, alpacas, turtles, horses, lab animals, birds, llamas, snakes, and zoo animals). But are microchips a dependable form of identification? And are there health risks linked with the chips?

Cat being scanned for a microchip

Microchip implants are promoted as a permanent and safe form of identification that lasts the animal’s lifetime. They are also marketed as a way to bring together stolen/lost pets with their owners, to seriously lessen the number of dogs and cats in shelters, to punish an identify the owners of perilous dogs, and to stop cruelty to animals and bad breeding practices.

Motives used to sell and promote microchips may sound attractive. Before being tempted by meticulously created ads that are being used to not only persuade people to have their animals microchipped, but also to put into action obligatory animal chipping legislation, we should look the facts.

Health risks

Consumers are frequently told that implanting microchips is safe. So safe that a pharmaceutical giant stated that scientific studies indicate that microchip implants are completely painless, well tolerated by the animal and that there isn’t any risk of allergic reactions. The bigwig even said that European experience indicated that microchips are never refused by the body.

Many microchipping advocates say the risk that your animal will get cancer from a microchip implant is nonexistent. Some even say that the microchip-cancer risk is an urban myth.

But ask yourself how nonexistent the microchip-cancer risk is if it’s your dog or cat that gets cancer. Ask yourself why years of scientific data show that an object implanted in the body can initiate cancer, yet nay-sayers of the microchip-cancer risk claim that microchip implants cannot produce cancer.

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