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Why should I microchip?

Way, way, way back in 2016, The Department of Agriculture announced a national microchipping program. This meant that, from September of that year, it would be illegal to buy, take ownership, sell or supply a puppy that does not have a certificate of microchip registration from an approved database. Suffice it to say, this was a serious win for animal rights and protection in Ireland, but what does it mean for you as a potential owner?

Well, put simply, it’s an extra layer of protection in the event that your dog goes missing and then turns up at a shelter. If they’re microchipped (and properly) your details with come up on the system and you will almost be guaranteed to be reunited with your wayward friend. If that hasn’t swayed your mind then we implore you to read on!

My dog already has a collar and ID tag…

Collars and tags are great, and not to mention a step in the right direction, but they can fall off or be removed quite easily. Microchipping is the only sure way of identifying your pet and matching it to you if they’re lost and subsequently returned. Whether it’s a pet shelter or a veterinary clinic, stray pets are easily identified these days because of microchipping.

How does it work?

A microchip, the size of a grain of rice is implanted under the skin at the back of your pet’s neck. On this chip is a unique 15-digit number that can be ‘read’ by a special scanner at all vets, pounds and sanctuaries. This unique number and your contact details are registered on a reunification database, so that should your pet go missing and turn up in any of these locations, you can be reunited.

If your dog is already microchipped it is important to ensure that you have correctly registered your contact details and made any necessary updates to that information. It is estimated that over 100,000 pet microchips in Ireland are incorrectly registered or not registered at all…

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When should I be getting this done?

· I am getting a pup: When a puppy is born, it must be microchipped and then registered to the breeder who is the owner at that point in time. When the registered pup is given to the new owner, the initial Certificate of Registration is used to conduct a Change of Ownership.

· I am getting a dog (not a pup): Bring your dog in to us to be scanned. Also, bring photo ID and proof of address. Our team can check if your pet is already microchipped and help you arrange registration if necessary.

Is it sore for my pet?

The short answer is: no. The long one is: without a voice to accurately tell us, we’ll never fully know, but most owners approximate the pain to be the same as getting a booster jab. The process itself is relatively quick and leaves no scar. Your bestest boy or girl will get tonnes of treats and pets when the hard bit is over; something we do with all our patients.

Are there any side effects?

In a matter of weeks, a layer of protein will form around the chip which will anchor it in place for the rest of your pet’s life; so you don’t need to worry about it moving or passing through once it goes in! All medical grade microchips are inert and biocompatible. There is virtually no chance of the body developing an allergy or trying to reject the microchip after being implanted. This means you’ve no excuse not to get it done; it’s for your own good!

So, we hope you can see the benefits of having your pet ‘chipped. It is for your own good and theirs, of course! If you’re unsure of anything we’ve gone over here or if you need some advice on a different topic, we’re only ever a phone-call away.