Microchips: Your pet’s ticket home

At about the size of a grain of rice your pet’s microchip holds the key information that will help you and your precious pet become reunited in the event they are lost. It is important to note that microchips are not “active” inside your pet; they are like a light switch, it remains off until the scanner turns it on to read their unique number. We have been asked “Why should my pet have a microchip, they wear a collar?” The answer is simple, a collar or ID tag can fall off whereas a microchip is a permanent solution. Since there’s no battery and no moving parts, there’s nothing to keep charged, wear out, or replace. The microchip will last your pet’s lifetime and there is no surer way for piece of mind knowing you have the means to recover them in the future.

Microchips are not a GPS chip and it cannot track your pet.

How does my pet get microchipped?

Having your pet microchipped is a simple task as it does not require general anesthesia to be placed. However, it is often easier to place at the time of a spay/neuter. The microchip comes in a sterile syringe and given the same way as a vaccine. It only takes a few seconds and no more painful than the poke of a vaccination.

How will my lost pet and I be reunited?

When a lost pet is brought into our clinic or an animal shelter they will be scanned to check for a microchip. The painless procedure takes seconds; a handheld device is waved over the pet and if there is a microchip it will transmit your pet’s ID number and display it on the scanner. The microchip itself does not show any of the owner or pet’s personal information. We input the microchip number into a website (microchiplookup.org) that tells us the brand of microchip. (We use HomeAgain microchips). We then call the microchip company to get the animal’s name and owner’s contact information.

It is vital to keep your contact number and address up to date with the microchip company in order to get your pet back to you.

HomeAgain Information:

When your pet first receives a microchip we automatically register it for you. You will receive an email and then you can create your own account. You can add in an emergency contact, upload a picture of your pet, and order a metal tag with your pet’s microchip number on it. The microchip initially comes with a rubber tag and a pet ID card. You will also be eligible for a first year of HomeAgain membership benefits for free. These include:

  • Access to the 24/7/365 pet recovery specialist.
  • Access to the ASPCA veterinary professional medical hotline. (Normally a $65 charge)

If you do not pay the yearly membership fee, your pet’s microchip will still work; you can still log into the system and change the picture and your contact information.