New Illinois law beefs up efforts to reunite lost pets

August 3, 2011

The Associated Press

(AP/Richard Vogel)
The legislation Gov. Pat Quinn signed Wednesday requires shelters to scan twice for microchips.

A new law means shelters will have to try harder to reunite lost pets with their owners. 

The legislation Gov. Pat Quinn signed Wednesday requires shelters to scan twice for microchips. The first scan would be within 24 hours of the animal's arrival and a second scan before it's adopted, transferred or euthanized. 

Shelters also are required to reach out to the person registered with the animal's microchip by phone or email. Currently they only need to send a letter, a process that can be ineffective if the owner has moved.

Quinn says pets are part of people's families and the state wants to do everything possible to reunite lost animals with their owners.

Quinn's own dog, Bailey, recently died.