Get your pet a Microchip!

As any experienced pet owner knows, an animal's collar can be lost or removed either by the pet's owner for a variety of reasons, the animal somehow frees themselves of it or it could be removed by another person. This is why the Virginia Beach Bureau of Animal Control urges pet owners to consider having their pet implanted with an RFID microchip to help our Officers, Veterinarians or other animal shelter staff members identify your pet and return it to you. A microchip is also a valuable tool in helping determine beyond a doubt the rightful owner(s) of a pet when ownership might be in question. 

These tiny devices (about the size of a grain of rice) are implanted under your pet's skin with a large needle and will remain there throughout your pet's life. 

A common misconception is that a pet implanted with microchip can be located with global positioning or a radio directional finder. 

There are radio-directional collars you can buy which are used primarily for locating hunting dogs, but we are not aware of any GPS service available to help recover lost or missing pets. 

When a pet is received by Virginia Beach Animal Control, upon it's arrival at our shelter it is "scanned" for a microchip using a hand-held reader that emits a low-power radio signal. If a microchip is implanted in the pet being scanned, the microchip will reflect an alpha-numeric identification number that is then displayed on the chip reader. Shelter staff will contact the manufacturer of the microchip to obtain the owners contact information in order to return the pet to it's owner. 

Keep your pet's microchip registration up-to-date with the manufacturer. Too often a pet is found to have a microchip and the only information available is the shelter, veterinarian or facility that implanted the chip. If an owner has moved or never registered the chip, we might not be able to locate the owner.