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I have a question about microchipping

1567 Views 16 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  VegasResident
So I was talking to a friend and fellow dog owner about microchipping and she said that it's really useless and a waste of money, that if someone finds and wants your puppy, they can take the microchip off.

My question is, is that true? So if my puppy or dog gets lost, ends up in someone's yard who is interested in the puppy or dog, they can take the microchip off?

Also, is microchipping for lost pets or stolen pets or can it be used for either?

Thank you.
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The chip is the size of a grain of rice and is implanted in the muscles between the shoulder blades. There is no "taking the chip off". Not without surgery.

If a pet is lost, a chip can reunite the dog with the owner. If a dog is stolen, a chip can prove ownership if it is contested. So it would be useful for both situations.
Thank you so much Miss Chris!
Hey, my dogs are chipped, tattooed, and have at least 3 tags on their collars.

It won't be MY fault if my dogs don't get back to me.... :)
if someone wants your dog bad enough, they'll never even bother having the dog scanned for a chip and even if they do, they can have the information changed to theirs anyway. Really unless you have a picture of you WITH the dog, i personally think the microchip is useless. And if someone wants your dog bad enough, they'll remove the microchip themselves. I've heard it done a few times.
I think there are a LOT of urban legends saying this or that about microchips, but rarely are they represented in reality. Like people saying "oh, tattoos are useless, if someone wants to keep the dog they'll just chop off it's ear". Has it happened? Maybe once or twice. Is it likely to happen, no. And is certainly no reason to not chip or to consider it useless.

People are not stealing dogs and then cutting the dog open on their kitchen table with a steak knife to find and remove a tiny chip that is imbeded somewhere in the general neck and shoulders area of the dog (a chip reader does not zero in on specific location well enough to guide a hack and slash home surgery job). If they liked the dog so much to steal it they probably don't want it dead or looking like Frankenstein.

And changing the info on the chip is not that easy to do. You don't just call up the registry and say "oh, I now have dog with chip number XYZ and this is my new information". It just doesn't work that way.
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I changed Kacies chip info over to my name and it was $35 a few yrs ago.
If her previous owner would have updated their contact info, Kacie could have been traced back, but that didn't happen.
AVID had no info on her other that what she was registered with(vet) and the vet had a dead end as well on the owner~who owed the vet for spay.
If you do not update info when you move or whatever, the chips are useless to get back your pup.
Regarding updating/changing the chip info to a new owner - it depends on which agency and who you get that day. I changed one dog over the phone without a single question from the person taking the info, and everything was switched over to me just like that.

I called, not knowing there was a microchip company ownership transfer form (there's a mouthful) on the next dog who was adopted and already chipped (Micah) and the woman accused me of finding him on the street and trying to keep him for myself!

As I did not have his original owners address or phone number etc, (only name) she finally said what they did in that kind of situation was send out a form to contest or claim ownership to the last known address on the chip. They had two wks to reply. If they didn't reply, they would change over the info to me.
Reading the requirements of the AKC identification stuff, I thought I needed a chip reader. I don't, but anyway, I priced them.

I am sorry, but if someone needs to steal your dog to get one, they probably do not have the resources of a chip scanner.

The thing is, no one will read the chip unless the person finds the dog and asks a vet to look for a chip OR if the vet gets a flier with a picture of the dog and when and where it was stolen, and that it is chipped. THEN in walks the dog with the theif, and the vet, if he is worth his salt, will tell them that they check for chips in all new dogs and check. He will then write down all the information, and contact you and or the local police.

What is more disturbing is that all pounds/shelters do not bother or do not own a scanner. Here you go through the expense to implant a chip in your dog, and the shelter sells your dog to someone without bothering to check for a chip. If they see a tattoo, there is really no way for them to figure out what it means. There is no data base to check tattoos in with, so they are pretty useless as an identifier to reunite dogs with people, but they can be used, I guess, for people to establish ownership once the dog is found in someone else's possession.

If you have 50+ related dogs, you might use a tattoo to tell them apart and verify who is who. Where you would need a scanner to do that with a chip.
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What is more disturbing is that all pounds/shelters do not bother or do not own a scanner.
Around here they do. Most microchip companies will give the scanners free for the asking to animal shelters, and most scanners will read most comercially available chips. Avid scanners will read HomeAgain chips, etc. If your local shelter doesn't have a scanner, they should call one of the major manufacturers and ask for one.
Not everyone working in shelters are there because the care about dogs. Some are there because it is a job. Some are volunteering there as a court ordered thing. Some are there for any number of reasons.

Some people forget to scan them, or simply do not bother -- even if they have a scanner. I would think this is unforgiveable. But when you pay people next to nothing to do a rather yucky job, you will not always get the cream of the crop.
Around Orlando it's been common practice for your dog to be scanned to see if it has a chip if you use one of the Banfield pet hospitals in Petsmart. I don't use them for their vet services but do ask if they wouldn't mind allowing me to weigh my pups just to keep up on their growth (my regular vet is 25 miles away whereas Petsmart is only about 5) so it makes it much easier for them to let me weigh them.
Only recently have they started recognizing me and stopped scanning both my dogs even when I bring them in for a weigh, not even a vet visit.
They said they are now making it a common practice because so many pet thieves think of Banfield as a "less than professional" vet so they bring in found or stolen pets as their "new adoptees" and several have been found and reclaimed by their original owners due to their microchips.
I have Homeagain microchips in my shepherds. Victor was already microchipped when I got him and they had to confirm with his previous owner before they would transfer with my information. They would not transfer info without calling him. If he was taken to a vet that automatically scans then they would know he was missing/stolen. The vets all around me too scan all the time for chips. Homeagain also puts out flyers and emails members so people know if an animal is missing. I also have them registered with car with AKC. I did not know about the tatoos so I will look into that also. I got ID tags,microchip tags,CAR AKC tags so at least I made an effort if one of them is stolen. I would hope that maybe the thieves would see those tags and think man if I steal this dog there is gonna be a lot of people looking for this dog so maybe I better not. There might be a chance that might happen.
I just wanted to say my future GSD puppy will be microchipped.
My shelter scans for microchips, if the dog has no microchip then they implant one(but thats only if the dog comes in with no identification or any proof of ownership and is not claimed and is put up for adoption.) If the dog is microchipped and current contact information then they contact the owner and tell them they give them 10 days to come and pick up their dog. If the info is not update and the owner doesn't come and get the dog then the dog is assessed to see if he is ok to be put up for adoption, the information is changed.

Once the dog is adopted the information on the chip to the new owners information. We had this done when my family and I adopted Tanner, we had Molly microchipped. Mostly(if not everyone at my shelter) works at the shelter because they love animals and have adopted a dog from there, same with the volunteers(most are older people, and the younger ones are with their parents.) I volunteer there because I love animals, and I adopted Tanner from there.
I just wanted to say my future GSD puppy will be microchipped.
That is wonderful. You should do the works like I did with my shepherds-ID tags, CAR with AKC,and microchip and maybe even the tatoo. Put all those tags on the collar and let people see this dog is taken care of and if she becomes missing an army will be looking for this dog.:laugh:
My boy is chipped has PetID and also has one other electronic tag. No ear tattoo. Long coat has so much fur in ear you cant see it.

I got HomeAgain. Maybe I should put a homing GPS on his head....hmmm
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