Did you know that one of the best things you can do to protect your beloved pet is to microchip them? While no one likes to think of their animal companions getting lost, the sad truth is that it happens every day. In fact, one in three pets will get lost at some point during their lives! In this article, a local Norfolk, VA vet discusses microchips.


Microchips don’t store your pet’s medical records or identification information. They also don’t function as GPS technology and, unfortunately, can’t reprogram your dog to stop chewing your shoes. Instead, each chip contains a unique ID number. This ID number is linked to your records in the chipmaker’s database, forming a permanent tie between you and your furry best friend. Veterinary clinics and animal shelters can read this number using special scanners. Think of the microchip as a barcode your pet wears under their skin.

The Procedure

Getting your furry buddy microchipped is a very quick procedure. It’s often done along with spay/neuter surgery, but it can be scheduled on its own as well. The chip will be gently inserted beneath your pet’s skin with a hypodermic needle. There is no medication or recovery time needed, aside from perhaps a forehead rub or some ear scritches.


Once your furry pal has been microchipped, you’ll need to make sure your information has been uploaded correctly in the manufacturer’s database. This is very important! The chip won’t do any good if your contact information is missing or outdated. Remember to update this information every time you move or change contact info. Once your pet has been chipped, you can check the information using the AAHA Universal Pet Microchip Tool, which can be located here.

Going Forward

Microchips don’t need to be serviced or maintained. However, it’s a good idea to have your vet check the chip during your pet’s regular appointments. This is just to make sure that the chip is still in place, and has not malfunctioned.


Having a microchip doesn’t mean your furry friend will no longer need to wear ID tags. Tags are actually  required by law in many places. They are also the easiest way for someone to link you and your animal companion.

Does your pet need to be chipped? Contact us today! As your local Norfolk, VA vet clinic, we are here to help!