It is a requirement that all cats and dogs that are registered with a Victorian local council for the first time must be microchipped before registration.

Compulsory microchipping has been implemented for the following reasons:

  • Promotes responsible pet ownership.
  • Reduces the number of cats and dogs that are euthanised each year in Victoria, because they can’t be identified and returned to owners.
  • Allows lost pets to be reunited with their owners.
  • If a pet is injured a microchip allows the vet to quickly identify the owner and contact them so the owner can make decisions on the animal’s treatment.

Microchipping a pet can only be carried out by an authorised implanter, such as registered vets who have completed the required training to correctly implant microchips.

The procedure involves implanting a small computer chip device (about the size of a grain of rice) under the skin between the shoulder blades of the pet. Each microchip contains a code that is unique to your pet.

Once a pet is microchipped, the information is recorded on your pets file at the practice as well as a national microchip register (such as central animal records). If a pet is brought into a veterinary practice or a shelter and has been microchipped, it can be scanned, and the pet’s information and ownership details can be retrieved from the register. If your pet is born after July 1st, 2020, you must have a source number to be able to get your pet microchipped. When selling or giving away puppies or kittens, this source number must be displayed on all your advertisements, including social media, along with each animal’s microchip number. It is illegal to sell or give away puppies or kittens without a source number and microchip. To apply for a source number, you need to go to the Pet Exchange Register (https://per.animalwelfare.vic.gov.au/).