Microchipping pays for itself:
If your pet goes missing and ends up at the animal shelter, you will have to pay $30 the minute the report is filed. On top of the $30, there is an additional $10 fee per day the dog is there. If your pet is microchipped, there is no fee to pick up the animal.
Microchipping protects against theft:
Animal theft is unfortunately very common, whether someone finds it as a stray, or a person attempts to steal if from your very yard. Most vets will typically scan for microchips for new clients. If your pet is microchipped and gets stolen, the microchip will always trace back to you when scanned.
Microchipping is a lifelong guarantee:
Whether your pet is stolen or is a stray for a few years, if it turns up at a vet or shelter the next day or 10 years from then, your information is instantly brought up. John Smith could steal your pet, move to Europe, and a vet or shelter scans for a microchip, you will get your pet back.
My pet has a GPS tracker / collar with contact information. There is no need for a microchip.
GPS trackers and collars can be easily removed. Microchips cannot be removed.
My pet never escapes or goes outside. There is no need for a microchip.
You do not microchip because you think you may lose the pet; you microchip if you would ever be sad to lose him/her.
Cats are considered free roaming in Virginia. There is no legal hold period for a cat, unlike dogs. If your cat is found by someone, they can instantly claim the cat is theirs if no microchip is found.
If someone finds a pet while visiting and were unaware of the best ways to reunite a pet, they may take the pet to their county shelter.
Ex. If John Smith picks up a dog while visiting his parents in Fredericksburg and takes it to his county shelter in Virginia Beach, you have lost your pet forever unless you choose to look at every county shelter that may be 2+ hours away.
The only disadvantage to microchipping is if you were to dump your pet somewhere, the microchip will trace back to you, and you will be charged for abandonment of an animal.