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4 Microchip Rules for Animal Professionals

A black and white cat touches noses with a woman holding a scanner

By Miriam Laibson, former Registry Director at Michelson Found Animals Foundation

In spite of the myriad issues plaguing America’s microchip economy today, microchips are still the most reliable form of permanent identification for pets. Mass movement toward the ISO standard and increasing awareness of universal scanners and are chipping away at the number of microchipped pets that slip through the cracks in the system. As animals professionals, we have a duty to not only educate our clients on the microchip registration process, but also to implement and sustain procedures that reunite pets with their families:

1. Purchase only ISO standard microchips

Every supplier provides 134.2kHz (15 digit) microchips; if you are receiving anything else, request a free upgrade to the universal standard microchip frequency. Your clients will thank you if they travel abroad with their pets, and your balance sheet will thank you later when scanners become more affordable.

2. Use only universal scanners that read all three microchip frequencies

Until a universal standard is adopted, any scanner that does not read all three frequencies (125kHz, 128kHz, 134.2Hz) will miss microchips. Contact Found Animals to test your scanner, or ask the manufacturer which frequencies it reads.

3. Demand that your provider participate with – and make it the first place you search for registration information

The AAHA’s universal microchip lookup tool saves pets’ lives, and is free for all registries to participate.

4. Register all microchipped pets in your practice

Scan and register every pet. Click here for a free registration options, or help clients complete any paid registrations before they leave.

These four golden rules can help your practice achieve microchip mastermind status and improve Return-to-Owner rates in your community.

Click here to read the full article from Pulse Magazine’s November 2014 Issue: Meandering Through The Microchip Maze.

Originally published in Pulse Magazine | November 2014

Written by: Deva Content and former Executive Director, Aimee Gilbreath.