It was something I wanted to do before I moved but it didn’t work out. My vet needed to get a new reader and it was going to have to be done after the big move. Yes, i’m talking about micro-chipping my horses. As animal owners we regularly chip our dogs and cats, its kinda a common practice but with horses not so much. It really should be for a few reasons but the most important is positive identification. If your horse is lost or stolen a microchip will almost always work as proof positive who the owner is. Nothing works better. Not a tattoo, registration papers or 100 photos of you smooching your horses face, nothing. A chip however can not be altered and is proof as to who owns the animal.
Horses get lost and stolen. It happens even though it’s not anything we want to think about. Fences come down in storms and horses get out. Unscrupulous people back trailers up to barns, cut fences and steal anything they can walk on to a trailer. Contrary to popular belief (and contrary to the person I got into an argument about this with just last week) horse thievery is not a thing of the past. People steal horses to turn a quick buck and auctions are supposed to scan for chips before a horse can be sold. Now thats no guarantee but if you can track a horse to a sale even if its already sold you have a better chance of getting your beloved horse back with a chip implanted.
I cant tell you the countless number of times I have seen people trying to retrieve or track down a horse they sent away for training that got mysteriously sold. I swear I see a post like this on Facebook alone twice a month. Imagine if that happened and you found your horse only to have a dispute over who actually owns the horse. These things happen and your best defense is to protect your horse with a chip. Especially if its not that expensive to get done. Mine will come in around 80 bucks a pop but i could have gotten it cheaper if i bought the chips though NetPosse. I opted to just go with my vet from top to bottom since it is a 14 gauge needle. She numbed up the spot first and it made the process so much easier with calm ponies. They were in fact both calm and it went very smooth. I have a little more peace of mind knowing that in case im ever separated from my lovely mares that i can prove beyond a shadow of a doubt they belong with me.
Need another reason? Beginning Jan. 1, 2013, all horses newly-registered with the FEI must be microchipped. Its the wave of the future in horse identification.