Microchipping is a great way to ensure your dog can always be identified if lost or stolen.  However, some pet parents worry about the potential for pain.  Here, whether microchipping is painful will be discussed.  

How is a dog Microchipped? 

The microchip, which is approximately the size of a grain of rice, is injected under the dog’s skin via a needle with a special syringe.  A veterinarian will pinch the loose skin near the dog’s shoulder blades and then insert the needle beneath the skin before depressing the syringe to inject the microchip. Once the microchip is beneath the skin it cannot be felt by either the dog or a human.  

Is Microchipping Painful? 

Microchipping feels no different to the dog than being vaccinated or having blood drawn.  In fact, microchipping is potentially less painful since the needle is only inserted beneath the skin and not into a vein or muscle like blood draws and vaccinations.  For pet owners who are worried about the potential of pain, a local anesthetic may be used.  Additionally, microchipping can be performed while a dog is already under anesthesia, such as during a spay or neuter surgery.

What Age Can You Microchip a Puppy? 

Many veterinarians recommend waiting until a dog is 8 weeks of age or older before microchipping.  In some areas of the world, like the United Kingdom, it is mandatory for puppies to be microchipped when they are sold, typically when they are 8 weeks old.