Stormy, a two-year-young dark grey and white male cat at Second Chance Humane Society, wants to live in a barn. (Courtesy photo)

My name is Tommy and I have a pet (pun intended) peeve to share. According to the Humane Society of the United States, only 2-5 percent of the millions of lost cats entering shelters annually nationwide are reunited with their owners. Compare this to dogs, reunited with owners at eight times the rate that cats are. Why? Because only 14 percent of cats arriving at shelters have identification compared to 43 percent of dogs. What the fur ball is up with that?

Are dog parents more responsible than cat parents? Do they care more than cat parents? No way. But cat parents you need to sharpen your nails and be more protective of your fur babies. I mean without proper identification, once we are lost we are pretty much living on luck to get back home.

I know all the reasons why cat parents don’t pursue this simple solution for protecting their cats. Some cat owners feel that if they have an indoor cat they don’t need to bother with the pesky collar while others are turned away by the “fit of contempt” that often takes place for first-time feline collar experiences. Another reason that cat parents avoid collars is from concern of the collar getting caught on something and choking or hanging the cat.  

The response from the animal welfare industry is simply that the risk of this happening is far less than that of your cat becoming lost and unable to find its way home. But none of this carries much relevance anyway now that there is such easy access to microchipping.

Microchips are minute devices that are painlessly implanted in the subcutaneous layer of the pets skin. Despite rumors to the contrary, regular microchips do not have GPS capability to locate a missing pet, nor can a satellite access them, so your pet cannot be tracked by a government entity or identified beyond a range of about 3-12 inches.  

Microchip implants help recover lost pets turned into an animal shelter, animal control, veterinarian’s office or any entity utilizing scanners to identify lost pets. As with any ID method, it is imperative for pet parents to keep the information current. More than once pets have arrived at Second Chance with a microchip that did not link to a working phone number or address, thus rendering it useless.


So, I survived Halloween and daylight savings — my next goal is to find a new home. I am an absolutely handsome two-year-young dark grey and white male. Currently, I live inside the Cat Castle here at Second Chance, but really would prefer living outside or in a barn. It takes time for me to trust humans, but it is a worthy investment of your time as I become a charming and loving boy with those I trust. I now have a microchip, so I won’t lose my way ever again.

Second Chance Humane Society Animal Resource Center and Thrift Shops service San Miguel, Ouray and Montrose counties. Call the SCHS Helpline at 626-2273 to report a lost pet, learn about adopting a homeless pet, or about the SCHS Spay/Neuter, Volunteer, Feral Cat or other programs. View our shelter pets and services online at