At Bemidji Veterinary Hospital, we encourage microchipping of your pets. For the safety of our patients, we recently invested in the new universal scanner that picks up all brands and frequencies of microchips. It can read microchips up to 15 numbers, which is required to export pets to some other countries.

What is a microchip and how does it work?

A microchip is a small device implanted under your pet’s skin. The microchip produces a frequency with a unique ID code. The code is read by the microchip scanner. The microchip company (exp: HomeAgain) stores the client’s information in their database linked to the unique ID code, and allows that information to be accessed by whomever finds your pet.

Why should you microchip your pet?

The statistics surrounding pet loss from HomeAgain:

  • 1 in 3 pets will get lost during their lifetime
  • 10 million pets get lost every year
  • Without proper identification, 90% of lost pets never return home
  • HomeAgain reunites approximately 10,000 pets with their owners every month
  • Getting lost is the #1 cause of death in pets

Here are some of the most common ways that pets can get lost:

  • A visitor accidentally lets your pet out
  • Your pet escapes through an open window, door or gate
  • Your dog digs a hole under a fence and escapes
  • Your pet gets lost while hunting
  • While traveling, your pet gets away from you
  • A thunderstorm, fireworks, or other loud noises scare your pet
  • An emergency situation or natural disaster separate you from your pet
  • Your pet is stolen

Is it safe?

Veterinarians in the U.S. have been implanting microchips in pets for over 15 years, and over six million pets have been implanted with HomeAgain alone. Properly implanting the microchip is important to ensuring it is safe, which is why the procedure is done by (or under the supervision of) a licensed veterinarian.


Having a microchip implanted is not the last step. You must register with the microchip company. The companies usually charge an annual fee and often offer other services. Be sure to keep your contact information up to date.