Microchipping more than doubles the odds that a lost pet will find their way home. A collar with identification information is great, but collars can be lost. A microchip is permanent.

Studies have shown that pets without microchips were returned to their owners 21.9 percent of the time, while microchipped pets were returned 52.2 percent of the time.

Microchips are about the size of a grain of rice and are inserted under the skin in a quick procedure that is no more painful than getting a vaccination. 

Microchips are not tracking devices. They can only be read at close range by a microchip scanner – commonly found at vet’s offices and animal shelters. Scanning a microchip reveals an id number. This number must be registered in the pet owner’s name and changed when the owner moves or gets a new phone number.

When a lost pet arrives at the animal shelter, they are scanned for a microchip. The chip number is put into a national database and if the number is registered to the pet owner, the pet owner is quickly contacted. If the chip is not registered to a pet owner, it will show the vet office or animal shelter that inserted the chip, and that organization will be contacted.

All animals adopted from Orange County Animal Services have microchip identification.

If your pet is not already microchipped, please discuss this option with your veterinarian for recommendations.

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