Many pets without any form of permanent identification such as a microchip implant are never reunited with their human families, but the BC SPCA hopes to change that with an innovative new provincial pet identification registry to link missing companion animals with their anxious guardians.
“We’ve created a first for British Columbia – a centralized database for pets who receive permanent identification at any BC SPCA shelter, veterinarian or microchip clinic across the province,” says Craig Daniell, chief executive officer of the BC SPCA. “No one plans to lose a pet, but it happens every day in B.C. – doors and windows are left open, or fence gates aren’t properly latched – there are so many ways pets can accidentally go missing, even if they’re indoor pets.”
The new registry will make it easier for SPCA shelters, animal control officers and veterinarians track down pets who become lost and also, showcase the importance of ensuring your pets have permanent ID, Daniell notes.
“We hope the registry will encourage pet guardians to provide permanent ID for their cats and dogs. It’s easy to do,” he says. “In the past, shelters and veterinarians had to call multiple registries to try to find contact information if a pet was found. By creating a single registry and promoting microchip ID as an essential part of pet guardianship, we believe we can dramatically increase the number of lost pets who are reunited with their families every year.”
In 2014 in B.C., 72 per cent of dogs and 14 per cent of cats who came into BC SPCA shelters as lost pets were reunited with their guardians.
The new registry allows pet guardians who use the services of any veterinarians in the province, or those whose pets already have permanent identification, can easily join the registry by going online to bcpetregistry.ca to create an account, and enter their animal’s unique microchip number along with their contact information. Registrants can also update their contact information online if their contact details change.
“The goal is to ensure that every lost pet is safely and happily reunited with his or her family,” Daniell says. “We receive thousands of stray pets every year at our shelters. We want to help them all find their way home.”