Is your pet microchipped? If not, what are you waiting for? Besides being a permanent form of identification for your pet, there are so many benefits of microchipping! 

Perhaps you’ve already microchipped your pet. That’s great! But did you remember to register the microchip? And have you been checking and updating the microchip information? These are two very important, but often forgotten, steps in the microchip process.

According to a study of more than 7,700 stray animals in animal shelters, the biggest reason that microchipped animals weren’t returned to their owners is because of incorrect or missing owner information in the microchip registry database.

Maintaining Your Pet’s Microchip

One of the best parts about microchips is there is very little maintenance on your part. The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) encourages pet owners to do three things to maintain your pet’s microchip:

  1. Make sure the microchip is registered.
  2. Ask your vet to scan your pet’s microchip once a year to ensure it is still functioning correctly.
  3. Keep your registration information up to date. This includes your home address, email address, and phone number. A microchip is only effective if the registration information is accurate.

Keeping your pet’s microchip information up to date greatly increases the chances you’ll be reunited with your pet. If your pet becomes lost and the information in the microchip registry database isn’t current, the shelter or veterinary staff won’t have a way to contact you. 

Check the Chip Day

We all get busy, I understand! And updating your pet’s microchip information can easily slip your mind. As a helpful reminder, the AVMA and the American Animal Hospital Association created “Check the Chip Day” to encourage pet owners to check their pet’s microchip information annually and keep it up to date.

“Check the Chip Day” is on August 15, so here is your reminder! If your pet’s microchip hasn’t been registered yet, you should register it as soon as possible. If you’ve already registered it in the microchip manufacturer’s database, now is a great time to check it and make sure the information is accurate and up to date.

If you find it helpful to write things down as a reminder, make sure to write “Check the Chip” on your calendar for August 15. Or maybe you’d like a handy record of your pet’s microchip information that you can put on the fridge or somewhere else where you’ll see it often. We can help you out with that! Simply download this form, print it, and then fill it out!

Updating Your Pet’s Microchip Information

So your contact information has changed and you need to update your pet’s microchip information. Now what? Just follow these simple steps! 

  1. To update your pet’s microchip information, you’ll need your pet’s unique microchip number. If you’ve misplaced the number, give your vet a call. He or she might have the number on file, or they can quickly scan your pet’s microchip to retrieve the number.
  2. Next, you’ll need to know the microchip manufacturer or brand. If you’re not sure of the brand or where your pet’s chip is registered, you can visit the AAHA Universal Pet Microchip Lookup Tool. This tool is linked to the registries of most microchip manufacturers and allows you to quickly search the microchip number made by these manufacturers. It will provide the microchip manufacturer and help identify which registry a microchip is registered on. It will also provide contact information for the registry.
  3. Now that you have all the necessary information you need, you can call or go to the registry’s website and update your information. If you haven’t already created an account with the microchip manufacturer, you’ll need to do so.

If your contact information stays the same, you don’t need to do anything. Your information will remain in the online registry as you entered it. If you run into any issues while trying to update your information, you should contact the microchip manufacturer or pet recovery service. 

According to the AVMA, there are many databases that allow you to register the microchip, but the one that animal shelters and veterinarians will search is the database created and maintained by the manufacturer of your pet’s microchip.

So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and check that chip!