Here is a recent heart-warming story of a cat being reunited with its owner 4 years after they became separated. The unlikely reunion was possible thanks to the microchip implant that the cat had: http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/california-family-s-missing-cat-booboo-found-in-guelph-ont-1.3346157
Microchip implants are a safe, permanent way to identify your pet in case he or she becomes lost. A microchip is a tiny device about the size of a grain of rice that is placed just under the loose skin at the back of the pet’s neck. The placement of the microchip can be done without anesthesia. When a lost dog or cat without an ID tag is found, a handheld microchip scanner can be used to check for a chip. If the pet has one, it will transmit its ID number to the scanner via a low-frequency radio wave. The veterinary hospital or shelter then calls the microchip company that has a registry, retrieves the pet owner’s contact information and calls the owner.
Here is some additional information on how microchipping works: http://science.howstuffworks.com/innovation/everyday-innovations/pet-microchip1.htm
We recommend that you use a microchip, along with a collar and ID tag, to identify your pet. However, collars and ID tags are not permanent and can be removed (overnight or for grooming); pets can also lose them. Even the most responsible pet owners can’t always guarantee their pet won’t get lost. A leash could break or slip out of your hand, a pet could push through a screen door or window, or a neighbour might accidentally leave a gate open. With a microchip, your pet will have a much better chance of being identified and returned to you. Pets without microchips are more likely to end up in shelters and then adopted by another family or even euthanized.
Important tip: if you move to a new address, make sure to contact your microchip company provider to update your phone number on file. This will decrease confusion when trying to reunite the pet with its owner quickly.