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Getting Your Dog or Cat Microchipped

Two steps to prevent lost pet heartache and regret: Microchip + Registration

A missing cat or dog is one of the most stressful situations pet lovers may endure. Sadly, many pets go missing each year, due to getting spooked and running off, moving house, escaping the back yard, natural disaster, being stolen, or having an accident.

The good news is, you can greatly increase the chances of being reunited with your lost pet, by:

Step 1: Microchip your pet at their vet

Step 2: Register their microchip to communicate your ownership and contact details

What is a microchip?

A microchip is a tiny device, about the size of a grain of rice, that is inserted just under the skin in the scruff of the neck of your pet. The microchip has a unique number that is then linked to your pet for their lifetime, which is readable by a special scanner, at vet clinics and animal shelters.  

Which pets need to be microchipped?

All pet dogs need to be microchipped as part of their local council registration. Farm working dogs do not currently require microchipping, but we do recommend they are.

We highly recommend your cats are also microchipped, to help reunite them with you, if they get lost or have an accident.

At what age do you microchip a kitten or puppy?

Kittens can be microchipped at 6-8 weeks old when they have their first vaccination. Puppies and dogs must be microchipped within 2 months of their council registration, so we suggest they are also microchipped at their first vaccination.

Do I have to register my pet’s microchip?

Yes, this is critical otherwise we have no idea who owns the pet that the microchip was inserted.

Registration of a pet’s microchip means we can access your contact details in the national database if your pet is found or injured and brought into a vet clinic or an animal shelter, as they will get scanned for a microchip upon arrival.

How do I register my pet’s microchip?

When your pet is microchipped, you will be given their chip number. Enter that into the Companion Animal Register, the national pet database, along with your home address and contact details.

Check with your vet if they do this on your behalf or do it yourself here

When do I need to update the microchip register?

You only need to register your pet’s microchip once. However, you need to update it when:

  • you move house and change your address
  • change phone number or email
  • re-home or change pet ownership

This will ensure your pet is returned to you as soon as possible or treated quickly if found injured.

What are the benefits of microchipping?

Collars and tags can fall off or be removed, but a microchip is a unique and permanent identifier for the lifetime of your pet.  The many benefits include:

  • Linking a pet to their owner so they can be reunited, giving you peace of mind
  • Provide proof of ownership during a dispute
  • Help identify dangerous or menacing dogs
  • Faster veterinary treatment if your pet is found and brought into the clinic after an accident
  • Prevent unwanted cats or dogs from entering your home, via a microchip door
  • Ensures only your pet has access to their food, via a microchip feeder


Can I track my cat or dog with a microchip?

No, a microchip does not have a Global Positioning System (GPS) function so it cannot be used to locate your pet.

The above information is provided as an educational guide only and is not a substitute for advice from your pet’s healthcare professionals. If your pet’s symptoms continue, you are concerned about them, or want further information, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

Disclaimer: This article provides general information only. It is not intended as medical or health advice and should not be relied on as a substitute for consultation with a qualified healthcare professional who understands your pet's individual needs.

Family Vet Limited

A big part of our local community - Our Veterinary Practice has been an integral part of our local community since February 2010. In that time, we’ve helped thousands of our clients cats & dogs, rabbits, rats and even a few birds.