Frequently Asked Questions

Microchips and the Technology

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) published a final rule in 2013 establishing regulations regarding the trackability of U.S. livestock moving interstate. The rule names specific methods of animal identification that are acceptable.

One of the permitted methods of identification is a 15 digit microchip that begins with the designated United States prefix 8-4-0 (ex. 840123456789012).  Only USDA approved companies are granted permission to manufacture the official 840 microchip.  Our microchips were submitted for testing and met all of the stringent requirements. Our microchip product, 840-ID, carries the official USDA 840 and comes in two needle sizes.

See it here – 840 ID.

Please call our office if you have questions about the 840 chips. [See the Full USDA Rule here.]

Our Mini™ Chip is the original tiny chip and is like no other! Developed specifically for the pet industry, our Mini line of products have virtually transformed microchipping in pets. With excellent readability, the needle size reduction results in much less discomfort for the animal.

We combined the latest technology and our bio-compatible glass to build the highest quality chip on the market. Mini™ is half the size of our larger chip. Tiny but Mighty! Delivered with a state-of-the-art syringe and an ultra slim sharp needle. Learn More.   

The Mini Chip

 

Microchip ID Systems, Inc. manufactures only Certified ISO microchips.  ISO refers to the ‘International Standards Organization’.
To be Certified as ISO, the chip must be manufactured as follows:
1)  Operate at a radio frequency of 134.2 kHz.
2)  Contain 15 digits, the first three of which are the unique assigned manufacturer ‘code’ . See note.
3)  Examples of our code: 965000000123456, 933000123456789

We also make a special ISO chip that has been approved by the USDA and the FDA for compliance within certain livestock industries. See the 840 ID Official Microchip.

* BEWARE:   Do not use microchips that begin with the NON unique ISO code of 900 (nine-zero-zero).  Over 70 companies (outside of the USA) have been issued these temporary ISO manufacturer codes.  It is nearly impossible to track an unregistered ‘900’ chip back to a manufacturer.

Yes! Customers love our Starter Kits! See them here!

Choosing a Microchip Provider and a Microchip Registry are important decisions. The chip you purchase and install will be a lifelong identifier for the animal. It will need to perform on demand for the many situations animal and owner may face. Not just for loss or theft,  but for regulatory, travel, legal situations, medical care and much more.

Since 1989 we have been a industry leader. Our Guide below is just what you need.  An unbiased and straightforward Check List of what to look for and what to avoid.

Guide to Choosing a Microchip Company

We proudly offer the very best services and live customer care (with no annual fees!) to pet owners.

Visit top-rated Microchip Registration Center and learn more.  Modern, efficient and smart, with Real-Time Customer Care.

Our microchip products can be read by scanners around the world.  Any universal scanner and many scanners that are not universal can read Microchip ID Systems products.

Some brands of scanners that read all microchips from any company are:
Halo, Destron Fearing, HomeAgain WorldScan, Datamars and Trovan

If you have any questions, give us a call at (800) 434-2843.

A microchip is a unique set of components that are put together and housed in a tiny glass tube. Our microchip products are made using the best components from carefully selected suppliers around the world. They carry an exclusive 100% Lifetime Warranty.
Our bio-glass comes from Schott® in the United States.
Our transponder coil and capacitors are made in Switzerland.
Other components are made in the United States.
All products are packaged and produced in Louisiana.
Our chips are approved by the FDA for safety and by the USDA for official use in livestock.

We get it. There are lots of chip companies from which to choose.  However, as with any product that LOOKS visibly similar, it is what lies inside that makes all the difference!

Microchips are far from equal!

Microchip ID Systems, Inc. has been in business for over 25 years. We innovate, we manufacture and we are hands-on. We stand behind everything we sell, say or do.

ISO Certified, AAHA Member Microchip Registry, Founder of the Equine Network, incorporated in the USA, on-staff veterinarian. The list goes on! Learn More About Us.

 

The American Veterinary Medical Association recommends a Certified ISO microchip for all species.
From AVMA.org:  “The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), World Small Animal Veterinary Medical Association (WSAVA), and American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) endorse the use of electronic identification in animals and support the implementation of ISO standard 11784/11785 in the U.S.” Read entire article here.

The microchip world is moving to the ISO standard.  For our customers in the USA, we make and sell a certified ISO chip AND the original 10 digit non-ISO chip.

It’s up to you. Both can be read by all scanners used by recovery entities, both are accepted anywhere in the USA, and the cost is the same. However, if you are chipping young pets, we recommend using the ISO chip as it used around the world and has become the technical standard. *

* Beware:  Do not use an ISO chip that begins with the first three digits of 900 (nine-zero-zero).  These are shared temporary ISO manufacturers who are not in the USA, making it is nearly impossible for a lost pet to be reunited with his owner, especially if the chip has not been registered.

 

 

In the equine world, FEI requires an ISO chip for an FEI Passport and for any horse participating in an FEI sanctioned event – here or abroad.  (See the pdf here.)
When ordering for FEI events, simply order our EquineChip™.  It’s all ISO, all compliant, all good.
Visit our Equine Website, just for horses (and other equines!)

There is one thing that matters when choosing a microchip registry. Does it work when needed?

Our answer is a resounding YES. Take a look at our website designed JUST for Pet and Owner RegistrationA successful and well managed registry requires a lot of work, live realtime customer care, great benefits and modern use of technology.

We do not charge annual fees.  We do not have renewal fees or hidden fees that kick in if a pet is lost.  We are part of the American Animal Hospital Association’s national microchip search program so any brand of microchip can be registered with us.

There are a few so called “registries” that are online only.  They simply dump info into a database and call it a day. They are not recognized by shelters, animal control, vets or others who identify lost pets.

‘Free’ registrations is not what we do.  However, we have great prices on our equivalent to free – a Registered Buddy ID™ Microchip which includes lifetime registration.

Those who rely upon microchips to reunite pets and owners have voiced grave concerns about a type of ISO chip that begins with these three numbers: 900 (nine-zero-zero).

Therefore, we provide an urgent warning and information as follows:

900 is a shared ISO code carried by over 70 implantable microchip products. It is virtually impossible to track these chips to their overseas and out-of-reach manufacturers.

Often sold online at reduced prices, vendors of these chips hide disclaimers acknowledging that they cannot track the chips they sell. Most of these vendors do not participate in the national tracking system.
There is no way to determine or confirm if the components of these ‘900 chips’ or the sterility of the products are up to par.

Irresponsible microchip manufacturing and/or record keeping can threaten the tried-and-true dependable system that pet owners and care-givers in the United States have come to rely upon.

Microchip ID Systems, Inc. Position: there is a clear responsibility that comes with the manufacturing and sale of microchips for animals.  Microchips should always be trackable to a source.  Company or vendor contact information should be available. A real time, live Call Center is mandatory.

Fast! Your order normally ships the same business day. If ordered late in the day, it will ship the next business day. You can also choose Overnight or 2 Day Air for faster service at an extra charge.

Microchips will not migrate if they are properly installed. To further curb any issues, our microchips are coated with a smooth bio-compatible sealer called Parylene™. This coating not only seals the glass but helps the chip bond easily to the tissue under the skin.

The American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) hosts the Pet Microchip Lookup Tool. The United States national microchip search tool is online at www.petmicrochiplookup.org. It is free to use. Thousands of  microchip numbers are checked through the AAHA system daily!

Note:  The ‘Lookup Tool’ maintains the privacy of the pet owner by supplying the chip Registry that has contact info for the pet.

 

 

Try these stats!

1.  A study of more than 7,700 stray animals at animal shelters showed that dogs without microchips were returned to their owners 21.9% of the time, whereas microchipped dogs were returned to their owners 52.2% of the time.

2. Cats without microchips were reunited with their owners only 1.8% of the time, whereas microchipped cats went back home 38.5% of the time. (Lord et al, JAVMA, July 15, 2009)

3. Over 200,000 microchip scanners have been placed with animal care givers across the United States.  Nearly all found dogs get scanned for a microchip.

4. For microchipped animals that weren’t returned to their owners, most of the time it was due to incorrect owner information (or no owner information) in the microchip registry database.

Moral of these stories:  Register the microchip and keep owner info updated!

 

No. A microchip installed under the skin of an animal is NOT a GPS device.  The microchip does not have a battery or power source, which are required for GPS. Microchips react to radio wave signals initiated by a scanner.

The technology to incorporate a lifelong battery for a GPS device small enough to fit into a mini microchip (yes, THAT small) is not currently available.

Horses? Donkeys? Mules?  The EquineChip is what you need!

Please visit our website dedicated to equines at Microchip ID Equine.   You can purchase equine microchips and/or register your horses there.  All information on this site is dedicated to everything equine!  You can also see some of our Equine Products here. If you need an 840 USDA chip, it’s here!

All microchips are not the same. Different companies manufacture their chips in different parts of the world…from Switzerland to China.

(Many new companies have started producing microchips in the last year or so) There is a significant difference in the quality of the parts used by companies in the production of their microchips. Their is also a remarkable difference in the oversight and quality control of the manufacturing process. Choose your microchip products from a company that has been in business for many years.  The time test is crucial when it comes to an installed chip.

Microchip ID uses only the highest quality components, from the glass to the integrated circuit to the antenna coil. Our chip manufacturing is fully automated and the production facilities are ISO 9001-2008 Certified.

A microchip is placed once for a lifetime. Ours are guaranteed for the life of the animal. You do not want the microchip to fail when it is need the most.

 

When you order from Microchip ID Systems, your microchips are documented in our database as being sold to you. Therefore the chip numbers are trackable to your facility. Always.

This is a free service we provide for your backup as proof of purchase.

PLEASE NOTE: This is NOT the same as registering an individual pet in a 24-hour recovery service. For pets, it is essential that the pet and his chip number and his owner be registered!

Shelters today are inundated with microchipped pets, and they often are unable to make a string of tracking calls. However if you or the pet owner registered the chip, then you or the pet owner or both WILL be contacted when a lost pet is located. Also, our modern services such as SearchALERT and Safe Places are only available for registered pets and owners.  Call us for more info and options. 800.434.2843.

In times of natural disaster or emergency, scanning for microchips is the ideal and preferred method of identifying pets and equines and reuniting them with registered owners.  Microchip ID Systems works with national disaster preparedness groups across America.

Disaster teams know the power of a registered chip when animal and owner have been separated.  It is the difference between being reunited or not.

As one of the longest standing microchip companies in the United States, Microchip ID Systems has maintained a pet and an equine database for nearly 20 years.  Our network makes information available to recovery teams and law enforcement agencies who locate missing or stolen pets or horses.

Call us for mitigation plans and ideas for holding microchip clinics.

 

The Equine Protection Registry is an all equine recovery network for microchipped horses, mules and donkeys.  The service is manned through a toll free number 7 days a week.

There is a one time, lifetime fee of $19.50.  A registration into the Protection Registry includes all important owner information, an alternate contact, and information about the horse, including his chip number.
MicrochipIDRegsitry2015-Log

In horses the microchip is placed in the nuchal ligament.  Half way between the poll and the withers.  Visit our website completely dedicated to the equine species!  Call us anytime.  800.434.2843.

Simple. You need a Certified ISO microchip.  The chip number must be 15-digits long and meet the specifications of the International Standards Organization. (ISO)
Plan ahead!  If you have questions, call us at 800.434.2843

No!  All information held in our database is private and protected by our published Privacy Policy.

No.  No renewal fees. No annual fees.  Your registration is maintained with full Member Benefits for as long as you own the pet.

If someone finds a lost pet, the odds are high they will take him/her to a local shelter. This will waste time, cause anxiety for the pet and shelter fees for the owner when they go to the shelter to claim the pet.

Safe Places™ prevents all of that!  Our registry members can login and list two ‘Safe Places’. Neighbors, friends or family. (NOTE: This is in addition to an Alternate Contact).  When the pet is found by a good Samaritan, we supply the closest ‘Safe Place’.  The pet is simply dropped off and never enters a shelter.  Safe Places can be updated at any time.

After 2 years in development, we began production of the original Mini chip™ in late 2013. Designed specifically for pets, this chip truly revolutionized the implant procedure. Standard microchips have in the past required a 12 gauge needle to implant, but the new Mini Chip™ is delivered through a slim sharp 15 gauge needle.

This makes a huge difference for the animal.

The chip is only 1.4 mm x 8 mm,  much smaller than a grain of rice.  The chip has been placed in hundreds of thousands of pets of all ages and breeds. As designed, the readability of the chip is excellent.  The implant procedure causes little to no discomfort…even in 6 week old miniature breeds, kittens or small exotic species.

Be careful when you are considering other brands of so called mini chips. Unlike ours, many of these were designed for lab animals, and never intended for use in pets. They have a very poor read range and will usually warn of animal weight limlts

Our exclusive Mini chip™ is ‘Tiny but Mighty’ and was tested in thousands of companion animals – large and small – before it was released.

Original Mini Chip

USDA licensees who use microchips to identify their animals can eliminate the need for tattoos and/or collars.  You should complete a USDA “Request to Use Microchipping as a Method of Identification”.  Read more here –  USDA microchip policy (pdf).

 

Register microchips online or by phone!  Our Microchip Registration Center is the best there is – offering modern social media tools, Search ALERTS, Safe Places, and so much more.  All microchips are accepted. No annual fees or renewals. Ever.

The same chip used in dogs and cats is fine for use in almost all other species. The implant sites vary depending upon the animal, but most have standard injection sites that we can provide for you.

The Mini Chip, with it’s much smaller delivery needle, has been an enormous improvement for microchipping small exotic pets.  Many zoos, reptile, bird, and exotic pet breeders use this  chip.

Yes.  And here is why.  Lost pet recoveries require conversation. Circumstances vary.  Owners are upset and need to talk to a real person. It is important to sort out the details.  None of this can be achieved by a human-less online registry.

Our highly trained staff assists owners, vets and shelters who are dealing with a lost or found pet situation. Trained pet specialists are available by phone seven days a week.

 

 

Free is relative! Many companies offer a free chip with each full price registration.  We choose to give you the discount on chips and registration up front. We can customize a plan that works for you. Call and talk to us! 800.434.2843