What age can a dog be chipped? And what it is Microchip?

Puppies that are 6 weeks or older can be microchipped!

What it is Microchip?

At a size equal to a grain of rice, Microchips are injected under the skin of a puppy or adult dog between his shoulder blades.  They use what is called, passive Radio Frequency Identification technology, where passive means that the chip is inactive or inert until an appropriate scanner activates it and displays a number.  It is not a GPS and cannot be used to locate a lost animal.

Most veterinarians and animal shelters are capable of implanting these tiny chips, as well as rescue organizations and some breeders.

Although the needle is larger than one used for vaccines, the shot usually does not bother most dogs.  Puppies that are 6 weeks or older can be microchipped, but small dogs are usually too small to chip at that age.  The American Kennel Club recommends that the puppy weigh least 2 pounds before being implanted.

Chips are implanted between the shoulder blades just under the skin.   People worry about whether there will be pain.

Most dogs tolerate the injection, but since the size of the needle is very large, (12 gauge) the dog is going to feel the prick more so than he would a simple vaccination with a tiny needle (25 gauge).  Needles are numbered where the higher the number, the smaller the needle.  No anesthesia is necessary, but some veterinarians will give the dog a little local numbing to reduce the stress.  Luckily, they generally last a life time, so it is a one-time deal.

The veterinarian or technician will scan the dog first to be sure there isn’t already a chip implanted.  They will check the bar code on the microchip, inject it into the animal just as if it were a vaccine or subcutaneous shot and then recheck to be sure the number can be read by a scanner. 



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