How to microchip pets could help prevent future heartaches and reunite pets with owners

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WAYNE COUNTY, Michigan – A woman’s beloved service dog in Metro Detroit has been lost, found by police, and then adopted to another family by an animal shelter in Dearborn.

Latonya Everhart lost her 14-year-old dog named Mr. Tipps on the day of her mother’s funeral, March 13. The family was visiting her home when the dog left the house.

When police found Mr. Tipps, he was wearing a collar, but his ID tag was missing. He was assessed and put up for adoption.

When Everhart finally found her dog at Friends for Animals of Metro Detroit in Dearborn, she was told that he had recently been adopted and that there was nothing she could do.

She still hopes the new owners will return her dog to her so they can be reunited.

READ MORE: Woman Hopes New Owners Return Lost Service Dog After Dearborn Shelter Adopts Her

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So how can you make sure something like this doesn’t happen to your own pet?

Mr. Tipps was scanned for a microchip, but he did not have one. Getting a microchip for your pet is one thing you can do to protect them.

Scaling is relatively painless and relatively inexpensive. It’s also a good idea to register your dog, purchase a secure collar, and make sure the ID tag is easy to read.

The Michigan Humane Society houses and cares for approximately 15,000 stray animals each year, according to its website. Only a small percentage of lost dogs (16%) and cats (3%) are ever reunited with their guardians.

The humanitarian society says the majority of animals that come to them lack any form of identification. Millions of unclaimed animals fill shelters and rescues across the country. The Humanitarian Society estimates that about a third of pets will be lost at some point in their life.

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You should make sure your dog or cat is always wearing a non-strangling type of collar, an up-to-date ID tag, and a license from your municipality. The humanitarian society also encourages people to microchip their pets, which is a permanent and unalterable form of identification.

The microchip is not a substitute for tags, but it is useful because collars and ID tags can fall off or be removed.

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