Microchip & Identification

The Humane Society of Western Montana receives more than 200 lost pets each year from all over our region – less than half of these animals are reunited with their families. Proper identification, including a collar and current identification tag, are crucial to a wayward pet finding his or her way home. A more permanent form of identification is a microchip.

Lost or Found a Pet?

The Microchip

A pet identification microchip is the size of a grain of rice implanted just beneath the surface of your pet’s skin between the shoulder blades, much in the same way a vaccination is administered. The microchip is encoded with a unique identification number that is linked to you and your pet’s information.

The Humane Society microchips every shelter pet prior to adoption, and also offers walk-in microchipping for pet owners in our community. The cost is $20 per pet for the community. We use 24PetWatch microchips. These microchips can be scanned by any universal microchip scanner and 24PetWatch Pet Recovery Specialists are on hand 24/7/365 to help lost pets find their way home.

Microchipping Facts

Microchips are a safe, permanent and painless way of protecting your pet for a lifetime. They allow lost pets to be identified at shelters or vet clinics and increase the chance that your pet will be quickly returned to you.

What is a microchip?

A microchip is a rice grain-sized transponder, on which a unique number is embedded.

How is it implanted in my pet?

The microchip is inserted using a needle between the shoulder blades of dogs and cats.

Does it hurt my pet?

It is a relatively painless procedure (similar to a vaccination).

Why do I want to microchip my pet?

  • Owners are concerned that their pet might become lost and want to have something more than just a collar and tag as a form of identification
  • We want to improve the chance of lost pets being reunited

Microchip FAQs

What makes a microchip system work properly?

There are three essential components to an effective microchip system:

  • The microchip has a unique number embedded into it
  • The scanner is used to read the number on the microchip which has been implanted
  • The database network where your contact information, tied directly to your pet’s microchip number, is stored or registered
Is there a registration fee once my pet is microchipped?

Initial registration is free of charge. You may opt to enroll in the Annual or Lifetime Maintenance Plan, allowing changes/updates to your contact and pet information.

What if I move? Can I change my information?

24PetWatch encourages you to advise them of any changes to your or your pet’s information. By enrolling in one of 24PetWatch’s maintenance plans, you will be able to maintain the accuracy of your information.

Can this microchip be read by other scanners?

Yes, 24PetWatch microchips are not encrypted and can be read by other scanners.

How long do they last?

The chip should last a lifetime, but it is recommended to check it once a year.

What are the dangers of microchipping?

Possible complications include bleeding, infection or swelling.

Why is it less expensive here than at my veterinarian’s office?

24PetWatch is available to participating shelters at a low fee, and we can pass the savings on to you.