AB Microchipping FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions: (Download PDF version >> Alberta Microchipping FAQ )

What are the advantages of microchipping in the nasal area?

a). The nasal area offers a convenient and behaviorally appropriate location as horses often investigate new objects and situations with their noses.

b). This location makes scanning horses in stalls, trailers and out in fields quick and easy.

c). Horses can be scanned without actually being caught, or needing to be haltered making it safer for handlers as you don’t need to get close to bite and strike zones.

d). The nasal area is also quick to heal and offers excellent tissue for the microchip to adhere with preventing any migration issues.

e). There is no need for any preparation of the nasal area prior to implanting the microchip.

What kind of microchip is the project using?

The project will be using Datamars Slim Microchip T-SL. This microchip is smaller than traditional microchips and is delivered with a user friendly 14 gauge syringe style applicator. This is the same microchip being used by the Jockey Club. For manufacturer’s information: http://www.datamars.com/products/companion-animal-id/slim-microchip/

Will this replace tattooing?

The Jockey Club has indicated that all Thoroughbreds registered in North America will need to be microchipped by 2017 however they have not indicated that this will replace the current method of tattooing. As the technology is adopted and tested it may be possible to move away from the traditional ID methods used such as tattooing.

Microchipping is less expensive than tattooing and doesn’t require any sedation to perform.

Is there a cost to have this done?

There is no cost to be involved with this pilot project.

Will we also have to microchip in the neck like The Jockey Club is asking us to do?

The Jockey Club is aware of the Alberta Micro-Chipping Project. The Jockey Club will accept the implant area of either the nasal area or the nuchal ligament. We encourage owners to note the location of the microchip when submitting the microchip number to the Jockey Club.

Who will be doing the microchipping?

For the purposes of the pilot study, microchips will be assigned and implanted by people trained and designated by the project. As the project progresses we expect the number of individuals being able to implant the microchip to increase.

How will I read the microchip in my Thoroughbred?

Microchips can be read with an ISO 11785 compliant microchip reader. You must ensure that the reader you select is ISO 11785 compliant and that it can detect ISO compliant 11784 134.2 KHz radio frequency devices

Will we need to purchase a reader?

No, you will not need to purchase a reader. They are currently available at Alberta Agriculture and Forestry Field offices, County offices and Livestock Identification Services (LIS) offices throughout the province. The CTHS (Alberta Division) will also have readers available to lend out to breeders on a limited basis.

If the owner of a microchipped Thoroughbred doesn’t know its name or pedigree can the C.T.H.S. help identify the horse using its microchip number?

Yes. Not only will you be able to identify the Thoroughbred that has been microchipped part of the Pilot Project involves developing software that owners, breeders and trainers will be able to use as a management tool keeping track of such things as health, medication, breeding and ownership records.

Once the microchip has been implanted what other steps are required?

Once the microchip is implanted, you should log onto Interactive Registration on The Jockey Club website and report the microchip number using the online Microchip Requesting, Reporting and Lookup module. Microchip numbers are not associated with a specific horse until reported to The Jockey Club by the owner or breeder. If you do not have access to IR, you can call the Registry for assistance at (800) 444-8521.

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