Why should you microchip your horse?
As of December 1, 2017, the United States Equestrian Federation will require all hunter, jumper, and equitation horses to be microchipped in order to compete and accumulate points. This is designed to ensure proper identification of horses and encourage sportsmanly conduct. It is not unlikely that other organizations will follow the USEF’s lead in the future.
But there are other benefits to microchipping, as well. A microchip is a permanent form of identification that can prove ownership in the event of loss or theft. Dog and cat owners are very familiar with tales of microchips reuniting pets with their families after separation, and microchips in horses work the same way. Brands and markings can be altered by unscrupulous dealers, but microchips cannot be reprogrammed and are very difficult to remove, so they remain the best way to identify a horse in the event of an ownership dispute. Additionally, the microchipping process is very safe, minimally invasive, and quick to perform.
Here is a good summary article regarding the USEF rule, as well as information about why microchips are a good idea.
At Fox Creek Veterinary Hospital, we stock microchips that meet all major industry standards—not all microchips are created equal, and some of the cheaper microchips can even have duplicate numbers, making them impossible to trace and extremely unreliable when it comes to proving an animal’s identity. If you purchase from us, you can rest assured knowing that your horse is in good hands and will be compliant with your organization’s rules—as well as that the microchip number is unique to your horse, so there is never any question of ownership.