Ever Thought of Getting Your Moggy Microchipped

It is Cats Protection's policy to microchip cats and kittens before rehoming and we are pleased to see that more and more owners now have their cats microchipped. The procedure can make all the difference if your cat decides to go walkies

It could be the best chance of recovering a lost pet if you are unfortunate enough to have your cat go missing. It is very sad to think that some cats are never reunited with their owners so making sure your cat is easily identifiable is vital to increase the chance of a happy reunion

What happens when two cats go to a chippy? Watch our video to see

It is a heartbreaking experience when an owner loses their beloved pet and is never reunited with them. It is a sad fact that a distressingly large number of the cats that are brought into our care are “lost” cats which have turned up at people’s homes. They are not “homeless” cats but someone’s unfortunate pet, that has wandered just that little bit too far from home, and has ended up in unfamiliar territory. There are several reasons why a cat may find itself lost. For example a mature, healthy, virile tomcat - especially in mating season - has been known to prowl for miles in search of willing females for over a week or more. When it has become obvious that the cat has become well and truly lost, and keeps returning to where it knows there is food, then kind people take pity on the cat, and take the time to ring us up to enquire if we have space to take in a lonely and confused animal

When a cat comes to our attention, the first thing we do is look for some sort of identification, including scanning for a ‘chip. If the cat is not chipped we have to trawl lost and found registers and advertise the cat as missing. It’s a very time consuming process with no guarantee that we will ever locate the owner, despite our best efforts. Yet if the cat was chipped then it would be swiftly reunited with its owner

Sadly not enough animals are equipped with a microchip, and as a result, many homes are left with an empty space where a furry friend used to lvie, only for that animal to unknowlingly end up in a different home, having been picked up and brought to cat rescues like Cats Protection in the msitaken belief that the cat is lost

We cannot stress how important it is that cats are microchipped. It would give cat owners more peace of mind and enhance our ability to reunite missing cats with their owners. We at Cats Protection have seen this microchip technique work its magic countless times, with unparalleled appreciation from happy owner. Microchipping is relatively inexpensive - for the price of a few boxes of food, you can give your cat a really good chance of being reunited with you, if he should ever wander too far off the beaten track

The branch took a call from an Ellesmere Port woman who said a cat had been wandering around her cul de sac for more than a week. She had knocked on her neighbour's doors but no one knew where the cat had come from, so she rang us to see if we could help. One of our volunteers went out to scan the cat in case it was microchipped. She found a lovely friendly Tabby that was more than happy to have the scanner rubbed over him. Lo and behold it started bleeping and up popped a number. One call to the microchipping database and we had the name, address and telephone number of the owner. We contacted her and within the hour the missing cat was back home. The Tabby had been missing for six weeks and lived a couple of miles away from where he was found. Unless he'd been chipped, it would have been very unlikely for the cat to find his own way home

You may have read in the national press about Sandi, a ginger tom, when he failed to come home his owners searched high and low in their town of Portsmouth. Posters were put up, leaflets handed out but there was no sign. Three days later they received the call they had been hoping for, Sandi was safe... in Bilbao, Spain. Sandi had managed to stow away on a P&O ferry. The Pride of Bilbao. Brian Rees an officer on the ferry said " Since he's been found he's been treated like a VIP - he's had a cabin to himself for the return journey and been dining on chicken and salmon. I think most of the crew have had a cuddle - they'll be sad to see him go". Sandi being microchipped has been absolutely key to his return

Microchipping is vital to ensure a return of your cat if he ever does go missing and comes to our attention of cat rescues like ourselves or the vets or rspca who all have scanners. Most vets will provide access to a microchip scanner on request, and all rescue charities will scan a new arival automatically in the hope of tracing its owner

The procedure is simple and takes only a few seconds and lasts the complete lifetime of the cat. The microchip is about the size of a grain of rice, so it is easily inserted just under the loose skin of the scruff - an area just in front of the shoulder blades. The scruff is where the mother cat picks up their kittens and carries them around, so it is a very flexible and tough area, and the microchip causes no discomfort to the cat at all. The procedure is no more painful than an injection

Each microchip has a barcode with a unique number linked to a database containing details of the pet as well as the owners contact details. A hand-held scanner passed over the cats' neck and shoulders will pick up this barcode, a simple phone call to the database can ascertain the owner's details and the pet can quickly be returned home

Although microchipping provides an excellent method of reuniting cats and their owners, the system is dependent on owners keeping their records on the national database up to date – for example, if they move home or change phone number. Owners should check their certificate which will tell them how to do this

Microchipping offers cats a safe method of identification which can be more reliable than other forms of identification such as collars that can get removed, snagged or lost. However, if you do choose to put an ID collar on your cat, it is important to make sure it is a quick release safety version and that it is correctly fitted

Cats Protection is a member of a Microchip Advisory Group (MAG), aiming to improving the standards of microchipping across the UK

Cats Protection is also a member of the Microchipping Alliance which is currently campaigning to make permanent identification (microchipping) compulsory for dogs and raise public awareness of the benefits of microchipping to cats and other companion animals