A reminder to update pets’ microchip registry information

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) are encouraging pet owners to check their pets’ microchip information to make sure it is up to date and accurate.

“Microchipping your pet is vital,” said Dr. Mike Topper, president of the AVMA. “But that’s only the first step. If your pet’s registration information isn’t up to date, the microchip is all but useless. It takes less than two minutes to check and update your contact information, and this small act can make all the difference in the chance of a lost pet being reunited with its family.”

Veterinarians know that microchips are one of the most effective ways to identify and reunite a lost pet, but only if the pet owner’s microchip registry information is up to date and accurate. (PRNewsfoto/AVMA)

Microchips are embedded under the skin using a hypodermic needle, similar to those used for vaccinations. No surgery or anesthesia is required – a microchip can be implanted during a routine veterinary office visit. After pets have been microchipped, contact information for the pet’s owner is registered to the microchip’s serial number in a database that veterinary or animal rescue staff can use to locate an animal’s owner should the pet become lost.

To check and update your registration information, you’ll need to log onto the database maintained by your microchip manufacturer. If you don’t remember the brand of your pet’s microchip, contact the veterinarian who implanted it, or you can use the AAHA’s Universal Pet Microchip Lookup Tool to do a quick search based on your pet’s microchip number.

According to HomeAgain, 90 percent of lost pets without identification never make it back home. Microchipping your pet and keeping your registry information current is an important step in protecting your animal. The company recently celebrated its two millionth microchip reunion in March when it reunited a 1-year-old American Staffordshire terrier with her family after being apart for 17 days.

The AVMA offers members a Check the Chip Day Toolkit, a suite of resources for veterinarians to educate their clients about the benefits of microchipping and updating their pet’s registry information.