Microchipping is a quick and easy, painless and relatively cheap procedure yet there are still pet owners who neglect to have it done, or are reluctant to do it.

Leo the Maine Coon before he went missing

Here’s a story that should convince you of its benefits.

Microchipping: how it saved this cat’s life

Ten months ago, Alet Willers had her prized Maine Coon cat Leo neutered and microchipped at EberVet Pet Clinic. He was a little short of a year old.  Brought up as an inside cat, it was just 10 days later that Leo escaped through a window blown open during a storm.

For three months Alet distributed thousands of pamphlets and posted countless Facebook appeals on Lost and Found Helderberg and many others in the search for her precious moggie but to no avail.

“I got very despondent at one stage because everyone on Lost and Found seemed to find their pets but mine never turned up. I had so many false leads but none were Leo, and after about three months of searching I accepted I probably wouldn’t see him again.”

That’s when the microchip he was wearing finally paid off.

Leo begged food from several homes

Ilse Steenkamp who lives just three streets away from Alet takes up the story: “A few months ago I noticed that food was disappearing out of our kitchen at night, even things like gnocchi and spaghetti bolognaise. I have two sons and there is always food lying around.

“Then in March we were braaing outside and my husband noticed this cat lurking in the yard. He was obviously starving but also traumatised and ran away when we called to him.

“I realised this must be the cat that is stealing food from our kitchen so I started leaving cat food for him on the counter.”

It took several months of feeding but eventually the cat accepted the family and as the weather turned colder, he occasionally took to sleeping on one of their beds.

“Unfortunately, he then started getting into fights in the neighbourhood. All the neighbours knew him; we called him ‘Mr Grey’ because we live in Grey St and he visited all of us. We decided the kindest thing to do for him was to have him neutered to try to stop the fighting.”

But when Ilse took ‘Mr Grey’ to EberVet Pet Clinic they told her the cat had already been neutered. The clinic ran a microchip scanner over him and discovered he had an owner – Alet Willers.

Alet and Ruan Willers collecting Leo from EberVet Pet Clinic

“When the clinic phoned me I burst into tears,” says Alet. “It was a huge relief for me.” Leo (alias Mr Grey) hasn’t left her side since. “I’m sure he recognised me when my husband Ruan and I went to fetch him. The clinic said he was a bit skittish but when we got him home he wouldn’t leave my side, sleeping as close to me as he could.”

Alet and her beloved Leo reunited

EberVet Pet Clinic’s senior veterinarian, Dr Esmaré van der Walt says, “This is yet another example of why we encourage pet owners to have their pets microchipped. It really is the best chance a pet owner has of being reunited should their pets stray.” https://www.ebervet.com/microchipping-pet-works/ ‎

“After my experience I’d encourage all pet owners to have their pets chipped,” said Alet.

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