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If you’ve ever had a pooch go missing, you know the heartache that comes with it. Fortunately, microchips help reunite dogs with their owners. But how much does it cost to microchip a dog? We’ll break down the price for peace of mind.

Microchip for Dogs: What Is It and How Does it Work?

It may sound high-tech, but microchips for dogs are actually pretty simple. Each microchip is a small device the size of a grain of rice. A vet uses a syringe to insert it beneath a dog’s skin, typically between the shoulder blades. The process takes only a few minutes and, because the area between the shoulder blades is not sensitive, your dog won’t feel much more than a pinch.

The chip has a unique RFID (radio frequency identification) code that can be read with a scanner. Scanning a dog’s microchip provides the owner’s name, phone number, address, and other important information.

It’s important to remember that a dog’s microchip needs to be registered online before it can be used. Their information will be stored in databases for vets and shelters to access. That way, if they pick up a missing dog, they'll easily be able to contact the owner. Your vet should instruct you on how to register your dog’s microchip once it’s been implanted.  

Are there any side effects?

It’s unlikely your dog will experience any side effects from microchipping. At worst, they may have some slight irritation where the syringe was used to insert the chip. But even this mild effect is very rare and shouldn’t stop you from getting your pooch microchipped!

Does my dog need a microchip?

Even if you take all necessary precautions to keep your dog safe, it’s still a good idea to get them microchipped. According to the American Humane Association, more than 10 million pets go missing every year.3 Having your dog microchipped is a quick and easy way to make sure they can find their way home.

So How Much Does It Cost to Microchip a Dog?

The good news is that microchipping a dog is pretty cheap. The average cost for a microchip is somewhere between $25 and $70.4 That covers the entire procedure as well as the chip itself. Prices may vary depending on where you live and your dog’s breed. If you adopt your dog from a shelter, they may include microchipping in the adoption fee. To make the process even easier, a dog insurance policy could cover the cost.2 Just make sure you have the policy before your dog is chipped.   

Does Your Dog Have a Chip on Its Shoulder?

Microchipping is a fast and affordable way to keep your dog safe, should the worst happen. There are other steps you can take, like a GPS collar and ID tags. A dog insurance policy can also help keep your pooch safe by making sure you can afford the health care they need.2 Find out how much a MetLife1 Pet Insurance plan could save you with a free quote.

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Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances.

1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.

2 Provided all terms of the policy are met. Application is subject to underwriting review and approval. Like most insurance policies, insurance policies issued by IAIC and MetGen contain certain deductibles, co-insurance, exclusions, exceptions, reductions, limitations, and terms for keeping them in force. For costs, complete details of coverage and exclusions, and a listing of approved states, please contact MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC.

3 “Attention Pet Owners: Have Your Pet Microchipped!,” American Humane Society

4 ”Microchipping Your Dog: How Much Does It Cost, How They Work, Side Effects, Tracking, and More,” Canine Journal