BONNIE is missing” blared the e-mail subject line. A 2-year-old female pit bull weighing 55 pounds, with gray and white markings, she was last seen on the corner of Maple Avenue and Myrtle Street in my community, wearing a chain collar. “I am asking for your help in finding my lost dog,” her owner pleaded.
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I immediately felt a pang of anxiety. And then one of confusion. Exactly what was I supposed to do with this information? It appeared on my smartphone because I recently got a new puppy and, while Riley was under the ether being spayed, the veterinarian’s assistant recommended inserting a chip for identification purposes.
My previous dog’s identification had consisted of a nylon collar and metal tag; the chip sounded Big Brother-ish, if not unnecessary. But the assistant assured me that “everyone” does it these days, so that lost or stolen pets can be readily identified if brought to a shelter or veterinarian’s office. A scanning wand would be waved over my golden retriever’s back, her ID number would pop up, and we would be notified of her whereabouts.