A microchip is a tiny device encased in biocompatible glass. The microchip is designed to be injected into the loose skin at the back of the dogs neck where it provides a permanent means of identification. The microchip itself is about the size of a grain of rice and injecting it is no more painful to your dog than a vaccination.
Veterinarians and shelters are provided with a scanner that reads the digital number on the chip inside the capsule. If your pet is picked up as a stray and he is microchipped, a quick phone call to the microchip company will have your information, and your pet will soon be home safe.
Pet microchips don't use an internal power source. It simply remains inactive until the microchip reader is passed over it. The microchip reader gives the chip enough power to transmit the pet's ID number. Since there's no battery and no moving parts, the microchip will last throughout your pet's lifetime
A microchip is completely permanent. It cannot be cut off or altered. If your pet is stolen, or sold to a research facility he will be returned. Research facilities will NOT take any dog or animal that has either a tattoo or a microchip implanted.
The cost of microchipping is between $15 to $50 depending on where you live. A lot of humane societies currently offer microchipping to the public. Once your dog is microchipped you are asked to provide your name, address and phone number so that information can be stored in the database should your pet ever come up missing.
Although more and more pet owners are microchipping their pets, there are still a lot of shelters that do not have scanners. In addtion, many pets are picked up by good samaritans rather than somebody with scanner access. Having your pet microchipped is still no guarantee that your pet will not be lost, or if she is, that you'll get her back, but it does reduce the risks.