Chips with everything! The importance of having your cat microchipped

With Swansea Cats Protection

Microchipping offers cats a safe and permanent method of identification and increases the chances of a lost feline being safely reunited with his owner.

Microchipping is the most effective way of identifying a lost pet (chips don’t come off or put the cat at risk of injury like collars can)

Each microchip has a unique number which is stored on a national database. A scan of the chip reveals the owner’s name and address from the database’s records

A microchip is slightly smaller than a grain of rice and is inserted under the cat’s skin between the shoulder blades,

The simple procedure is usually carried out by a vet and is no more painful than an injection. A cat will not be aware of the microchip’s presence once inserted Swansea Cats Protection (in conjunction with RSPCA) offer a £5 neutering and microchipping scheme for cat owners on a low income or in receipt of benefits, and is available directly via participating local veterinary surgeries (please see our website for further details of this valuable service)

Tinker’s Tale

We decided to look at microchipping this month because of a recent reminder of the value to both cats and owners alike. Just a couple of weeks ago we were contacted via our Helpline by a very concerned member of the public who had found a skinny and bewildered cat near her home. She’d noticed it around the area for a while but was unsure if it belonged to someone or not. As the days went by, it was clear this poor puss was lost and needed help, so despite having two dogs who weren’t too keen on cats, she took the cat in. Perhaps it wasn’t such a good idea! The dogs woofed, the cat meowed! The lady called our Helpline.  A good move… within a short time one of our hardworking volunteer branch co-ordinators had noticed the call as urgent and asked if a volunteer was free to help. A very quick response from stalwart volunteer Gaynor meant she was soon in her ‘limo’ and off to check on the cat. The cat was now holed up in the lady’s bathroom with the dogs secured in another room but enjoying every minute of the unfolding drama!

As Swansea Cats Protection volunteers, we all have access to a hand-held microchip scanning device… and we know how to use it! Gaynor was fully confident in how to thoroughly search for a microchip in a cat by first scanning the neck area (where the tiny microchip is most likely to be located) and if nothing found, to move the device around the cat’s shoulders, legs and sides. Luckily, she found it easily and quickly on this particular puss, who was very cooperative despite being understandably distressed by her plight. Once the device locates the microchip, the identification number is immediately displayed, and the owner’s details can then be looked up on a national registered database. To the absolute delight of volunteer Gaynor and the lady who’d kindly taken this poor lost cat in, young Tinker (as we found out she was called) was registered on the microchip database as ‘lost’ by her loving owners.

Tinker had been found in a remote, countryside location which was many miles away from her home. How did she get there? We will never know, and dear Tinker isn’t telling! Within only a few short hours Gaynor was able to contact Tinker’s owners to give them the good news and transport her back home in the ‘limo’ for a happy reunion. And a very, very happy reunion it was, with tears and hugs and squeals (and meows) of delight from all concerned. Wonderful! Emma and Liam, Tinker’s overjoyed owners, had reported her missing 14 weeks ago and were beginning to think they’d never see their beloved little cat again. But for the microchip, that may well have been the case and poor Tinker would have had a very uncertain future as a stray. Thankfully, Emma and Liam had done the right thing and had their beloved Tinker microchipped and neutered – by doing so, she could be safely brought back to them. A very happy ending.

Our Policy on Microchipping 

All cats and kittens brought into the care of Swansea Cats Protection are microchipped (and neutered, treated for worms and other parasites) prior to rehoming – we know how important it is. Tinker’s story is only one of many, many others we deal with every week, but not all have such a straightforward and happy ending. Some cats we are called to scan are not microchipped of course, but increasingly common is that they are chipped, but the owner’s details are out of date and we cannot trace them. No happy reunion sadly.

Remember you should change your microchip details if you move house. You can do this by contacting your microchip database – find the phone number on your microchip paperwork.

SAY HELLO to some of our wonderful cats hoping for a new home

Mindy, Benny, Rosie and Jim

Mindy is a sweet young cat who came into us as a stray who was probably left behind by a previous owner. She is a quiet, shy cat but loves to be stroked and cuddled once you have gained her trust.

Benny is a lovely, friendly big male cat who likes nothing more than a big fuss and cuddle! He did not settle in his new home when his previous owner moved and is now looking for a new sofa to stretch out on.

Rosie and Jim are darling older cats who came into our care because their owner died. They were re-homed but sadly dear Rosie was afraid of the family dog, so they were returned. We are desperately hoping a loving home can be found again very soon for this sweet pair to live out their ‘retirement’ in warmth and comfort – could you be the one?

If you are interested in adopting or fostering one our lovely cats or kittens, please get in touch and arrange to come and meet the cats waiting patiently for a safe, loving home. We can be contacted via our Helpline 0345 260 2101 or email us at swanseacats@hotmail.com. Please note our Helpline is answered by a messaging service and we will respond as soon as we can, but please be patient and remember that we are all unpaid volunteers trying to do our best for the rescue cats and kittens of Swansea.

Molly

Ed: You will have read that Sarla Langdon passed away last month. Sadly, her lovely cat called Molly has had to be re-homed and is with Cats Protection. Sarla loved Molly and it would be lovely if one of you lovely readers would take her in. She’s a very quiet cat and quite elderly so would probably like a nice peaceful home to settle down in. She does like to sit on a book as Sarla often found when she left one open on the table. Please contact Cats Protection if you think you could offer Molly a home.

 

 

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