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Radio-frequency identification devices

The American Animal Hospital Association recognizes the tremendous benefits that microchips can provide for animal health. To resolve issues of compatibility and provide for broader implementation of this technology, AAHA recommends that microchips adhere to the following:

  1. The microchip industry should move toward the adoption and broad implementation of ISO-standard (ISO 11784 and 11785) microchips.
  2. To provide for both forward (i.e., ISO standard) and backward (i.e., AVID/Home Again [Destron]/Trovan) compatibility, a universal reader should be developed and implemented prior to the actual introduction of ISO-standard microchips.
  3. The database is integral to a microchip system's integrity. Database registration and support should be intimately linked to each microchip sold. Registration, information updating, and access should be easily and readily available. Microchip identification should have a central registry.
  4. Manufacturers/distributors of microchip technology should provide trace-back capability, ensuring a specific microchip number can be traced from its source of production to the animal into which it has been implanted.
  5. Implantation sites for microchips used in companion animals should adhere to the "Standardized Implantation Sites" adopted by the ISO. For the dog and cat, this site is subcutaneously, on the dorsal midline, just cranial to the shoulder blades or scapula. (Note: this content was published in the August/September 1999 issue of Trends magazine).

Adopted by the American Animal Hospital Association Board of Directors, October 2000. Last revised October 2009.

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