How do microchips work?

Tiffany CarsonTiffany Carson St. MarysPosts: 15,800Member
My dad wants to get Gray Dawntreader microchipped because he is the kind of dog that people will steal, and Treader is very trusting anyway. I read in the Dog Bible that microchips (unlike my dad thought) are not traceable by satilite, and can only be read by someone with a microchip reader. The Dog Bible was written 3 or 4 years ago, so microchips have probably improved since then. Have they? Can a satilite be used to find a microchipped, lost (or stolen) dog?

Best Answers

  • Michelle BradleyMichelle Bradley CaliforniaPosts: 3,684Member
    Accepted Answer
    Hi there! What you're talking about is GPS (or Global Positioning System) which works via satellite. As far as I know, that is not how any microchip works. Microchips simply store a limited amount of information about the dog in the small chip, but there is no locater technology involved. Basically, the microchip only works if your dog is found by someone who thinks to take him to the shelter to have him checked for a microchip. I've been debating about getting Jack microchipped. With the little furry mix breed craze at its peak, there have been a lot of dognappings lately. I worry about him, too. But, I have also heard there is a strong debate on whether or not the microchips have been linked to cancer or subcutaneous tumors. According to some sources, there is evidence to suggest it isn't safe. But, then other sources say it is fine. It is hard to know where the truth lies, especially in a recently new technology.
  • Chris & Brian CrawfordChris & Brian Crawford Posts: 1,879Member
    Accepted Answer
    No, you can not use a satellite to locate a microchipped dog that was lost or stolen. Microchips are not used to track a dog, they are used to identify a dog. If someone brings a dog into a vet clinic or animal control facility, which is where lost dogs are often taken to see whether they are chipped so that they can be returned to their owners, they can scan the dog with a hand-held chip reader. This lets them know the manufacture and number of the chip and they can call the company and get your information to return the dog to you. If a dog is stolen, microchipping will not help return the dog to you unless the vet notices that the chip does not match what the person says. If a stolen dog never gets scanned for a chip, there's no way the chip will help return him to his owners.
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