For four-year-old Raven, who originally went missing back at the start of 2020, the fact that his owner had included both her address, phone number and email on his chip was his saving grace – as, despite her moving house during the pandemic, we still managed to bring the two of them back together after 10 long months apart.
Raven’s owner had originally looked all over for him, and was heartbroken when he didn’t return a few months after wandering off. Despite missing him and desperately wanting him back, she had no choice but to move house a couple of weeks later, resigning herself to never seeing poor Raven again.
Raven, however, had struck lucky and found a lovely family who was feeding him as a stray, so wasn’t in any kind of pain or distress and was being well looked after!
After a while, Raven’s finders decided to go through the process of adopting him officially, and brought him into us as a stray intended to have him checked over and registered to them if they passed our initial assessment.
As with all animals who come into our clinic, we searched for a microchip and to our surprise found that Raven actually had an up to date one. We tried sending a letter, text and email to the details on file, and despite the letter obviously never arriving with the original owner, she did receive the email and replied to us shortly afterwards in surprise and delight.
Although Raven’s feeders were obviously disappointed that they would no longer be taking Raven home with them, they were thrilled for him and his original owner who came in to pick him up as soon as she could. Whilst Raven was with us we’d given him a full health assessment and neutered him, and cleaned up a few old scabs on his head and ears that he’d picked up during his time straying.
When Raven’s owner first saw him, she couldn’t believe her eyes that he was really there.
Although Raven has now settled back into his new house, we expect to see many more cats just like him who sadly will never get to see their loving owners again. Cats like Graham, whose story we shared last month and who are not microchipped, rely on voluntary neighbourhood posters and word of mouth if they are discovered all alone, and often this is not sufficient enough to be able to track down their original family.
It’s also incredibly important that multiple methods of contact are included on a microchip, so that if owners like Raven’s move or get a new phone or lose access to their email account, they can still be reached by one of the other methods.
We are thrilled to hear that a recent government consultation into compulsory cat microchipping has now moved to the next stage, with Justice Secretary Robert Buckland having set up a new taskforce to look into the practicalities of making microchipping cats a legal obligation, just like it currently is for dogs, to help prevent pet theft. Mayhew fed advice and thoughts into the original consultation, and we will be watching closely for any updates over the next few months.
You can also read more about our on site Vet Clinic and the services we offer, including microchipping, here – though please note we are currently running at a significantly reduced capacity due to the ongoing pandemic, and are not currently open to the public.
Whilst compulsory dog microchipping is a legal requirement for owners, there is currently no equivalent legislation covering the microchipping of cats – despite animal welfare charities and organisations including Mayhew unanimously backing such a move.Keep reading
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