Reunited by Microchip
by Danielle Cookish
Miguel’s kids were heartbroken. Cookie, their 4-year-old indoor cat, had slipped outside their home and gotten lost. The family searched diligently for her but to no avail. Five months after Cookie went missing, they had given up hope.
Recently, Miguel got a call from Dakin. A newly-arrived cat named Bones had a microchip with his phone number as a contact, although the address was listed as being in the Bronx. Miguel explained that he had adopted Bones (now Cookie) as a kitten from a New York City shelter, later moved to western Massachusetts, but kept the same phone number. He jumped into his car and drove to Dakin immediately.
Animal Resource Counselor Madeline recalled, “When Miguel arrived, he took a photo of Cookie and texted it to his wife. She wrote back, ‘Yes! That’s HER!’ Cookie is very distinctive, and while they had gotten a lot of leads, none paid off until now."
“They were all so happy,” said Madeline. “It must have been very hard for his kids to not know where their kitty was.” When Cookie got away, Miguel had called the microchip company, hoping that she could be tracked via the chip, like a GPS system, but he learned it doesn’t work that way.
A microchip is about the size of a grain of rice and is implanted between the shoulder blades of a dog or cat. When a lost pet is found and brought to a shelter or veterinarian, the pet is scanned with a device that detects the microchip. An identification number is revealed, and a database search provides the address and phone number of the person who adopted the animal when it was microchipped. That’s why, if your pet is microchipped, it’s critical that you update the microchip company with changes of address or phone number.
After all, pets belong with their families.