Choosing the Chips for the Future

Microchips are simple in concept yet bewildering, the technology is high level, especially for the cost.


Like all electrical devices, China has moved in with cheap, less well made products which do not fulfil the needs properly – but they cost 25-30% of the price of European microchips. There are many options and systems available. With so little difference in price between microchips should veterinary surgeons be choosing the microchip to identify their clients animals because it’s the cheapest?


They have a responsibility to choose a microchip which:

·         is reliable and will last the life of the animal

o   will be resistant to electromagnetic radiation used in MRI etc

·         has maximal tissue acceptance

·         assuming that it is placed properly will migrate least

·         has a good read range

There can be reasons why a particular microchip is cheap, including:

·         It may be cheap manufacture and may have an increased likelihood of failure

o   Poor ferrite and windings resulting in poor read range

o   Non-bioglass, or heat sealing increases the changes of microfracture and failure

o   Up to 20 soldered connections which can fail, more means greater risk

o   It may be subsidised and linked with a drug company offering

·         The database associated with the brand may be built around a marketing model such that clients will be regularly updated with offers of insurance, pet products etc.


petDetect market the Trovan microchips in UK and their Managing Director Peter Scott FRCVS took them on because of their long established reputation for reliability in the zoo and wildlife sector where long lived animals are the norm. Having been involved in microchipping since the mid 1980’s he was very selective. Their maximised read range, laser written ie. hard wired, not just programmed microchips, are bioglass encased and laser sealed. They are manufactured completely in Germany, rather than just being packaged and programmed in Europe. Trovan chips are chosen for tracking F1 parts for a very good reason.


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