Microchipping with an ID at the back of the neck is important for cats as it allows them to exercise their natural inclination to wander but ensures that they will be successfully reunited with their owners if they go too far. SureFlap, the microchip operated cat flap, allows cats freedom and is often recommended by vets. This makes it a good fundraising partner for PDSA, the UK’s leading veterinary charity, cat behaviourist and veterinary surgeon, Jon Bowen BVet Med MRCVS DipAS(CABC) says that problems can occur when a cat is not allowed free outdoor access:
“The cat evolved to spend much of its time maintaining its territory and hunting. Cats are therefore ‘programmed’ to spend time doing certain activities; if they are unable to do these things, they can become frustrated and stressed.
“Timing is far more critical for a cat then we realise. Cats follow strict routines that enable them to be in the right places at the right times. This helps them to hunt, mark territory and, most importantly, avoid other cats they dislike. If a cat gets behind schedule, it could find itself in a fight with another cat. Secure cat flaps are great because they give cats freedom to follow their routines and stay out of trouble, whilst preventing home invasion by neighbouring cats.”
SureFlap uses the cat’s own microchip as a ‘front door key’ allowing the pet to come and go as it pleases. Additionally, unlike a magnet operated flap, no collar is required that can snag on trees or get lost as the cat explores.
Research by the PDSA* has revealed that less than half of the UK’s 11.0 million cats are microchipped and 96 percent of vets and vet nurses surveyed said they would make microchipping compulsory, ensuring that they are able to contact the owners of injured pets in an emergency.
Microchipping is a very quick procedure. A chip with a unique ID number is inserted into the loose skin at the back of the pet’s neck and the number is stored on a large database with its owner’s contact details. If the pet is taken to a vet, he or she will scan for a chip and quickly get in touch with the owner.
There is no better time to microchip your pet, and to encourage more people to microchip their pets, PDSA is running a special promotion via its website. Anyone purchasing a SureFlap and using the PDSA promotional code will be directly supporting the PDSA in its work of caring for the sick and injured pets of people in need as it will receive a £10.50 donation for every purchase.
More information is available here.
Written by Victoria Ellis