Micro chipping is a great idea, but there has been a debate whether it should be made mandatory or not. There is always an element of risk that pets can get out of home and be lost. Worrying pet parents may get them micro chipped to facilitate faster and accurate recovery

Microchip implant is an identifying integrated circuit placed under the skin of a dog, cat, horse, parrot or any other domesticated animal. The chip, about the size of a large grain of rice, uses passive RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology, and is also known as a PIT (Passive Integrated Transponder) tag. Implanting a micro chip is the same as administering a vaccine. It does not require any anaesthesia and the pet only feels momentary pain.

Externally attached microchips such as RFID ear tags are commonly used to identify farm and ranch animals other than horses. Some external microchips can be read with the same scanner used with implanted chips. Animal shelters, animal control officers and veterinarians routinely look for microchips to return lost pets quickly to their owners, avoiding expenses for housing, food, medical care, out placing and euthanasia. Many shelters place chips in all out placed animals. It contains a unique number to identify the animal. This is online registration number for shelters, veterinarians, clinics and humane organisations that help in identifying the lost pet. When collars and tags get damaged and lost, it is only this permanent identification mark that remains.

The microchip itself has no internal energy source, so it will last the life of your pet. It is read by passing a microchip scanner over the pets’ shoulder blades. The scanner emits a low radio frequency, which provides the power necessary to transmit the microchips unique cat or dog ID code, and positively identify the pet.

About a quarter of European pets have microchip implant. In The Netherlands, it is a law to chip every new born pup. All vets are supposed to scan new patients. England will have mandatory micro chipping of dogs by 2016, but the idea is not very popular in USA. Some countries, such as Japan, require ISO-compliant microchips or a compatible reader on imported dogs and cats. In most countries, pet ID chips adhere to an international standard to promote compatibility between chips and scanners. In the US, there are at least 3 different companies giving out identification numbers.

Micro chipping is a great idea, but there has been a debate whether it should be made mandatory or not. There is always an element of risk that pets can get out of home and be lost. Worrying pet parents may get them micro chipped to facilitate faster and accurate recovery. If microchips are made mandatory, scanners should also be mandatory at any facility handling dogs or cats (vets, shelter and so on). It is only the manufacturing companies that make recordings. There is also a monthly cost to keep your pet’s information available and active in the database. Though there are counter arguments that a company cannot remove the device once placed, so even if the fees is not paid, the pet remains micro chipped.

Though placed between the collars of the animal, sometimes the chips tend to move inside. However, the fear of it reaching the brain is useless, as they cannot travel upwards against gravity. Sometimes, cases of cancer are also reported. Studies have also revealed that about 10 percent of the animal bodies reject the chips. If the insertion is not done with expertise, it may lead to excessive bleeding and even death.

People argue that it should not be made mandatory, and should be left to individual choice. There are suggestions that tattooing an animal is also a better and cheaper option.