Identification of Microchip Implantation Events for Dogs and Cats in the VetCompass Australia Database

Croton, Catriona ORCID: and McGreevy, Paul and Masters, Sophie and Richards, Leonie and Soares Magalhaes, Ricardo and Peaston, Anne and Combs, Martin and Irwin, Peter and Lloyd, Janice and Wylie, Claire and Wilson, Bethany (2019) Identification of Microchip Implantation Events for Dogs and Cats in the VetCompass Australia Database. Animals, 9 (7):423. pp. 1-10.

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In Australia, compulsory microchipping legislation requires that animals are microchipped before sale or prior to 3 months in the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria, and by 6 months in Western Australia and Tasmania. Describing the implementation of microchipping in animals allows the data guardians to identify individual animals presenting to differing veterinary practices over their lifetimes, and to evaluate compliance with legislation. VetCompass Australia (VCA) collates electronic patient records from primary care veterinary practices into a database for epidemiological studies. VCA is the largest companion animal clinical data repository of its kind in Australia, and is therefore the ideal resource to analyse microchip data as a permanent unique identifier of an animal. The current study examined the free-text ‘examination record’ field in the electronic patient records of 1000 randomly selected dogs and cats in the VCA database. This field may allow identification of the date of microchip implantation, enabling comparison with other date fields in the database, such as date of birth. The study revealed that the median age at implantation for dogs presented as individual patients, rather than among litters, was 74.4 days, significantly lower than for cats (127.0 days, p = 0.003). Further exploration into reasons for later microchipping in cats may be useful in aligning common practice with legislative requirements.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2019 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2021 01:52
Last Modified: 02 Dec 2021 05:19
Uncontrolled Keywords: Cats; Dogs; Microchip; Strays; VetCompass Australia
Fields of Research (2008): 08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0806 Information Systems > 080604 Database Management
07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0707 Veterinary Sciences > 070704 Veterinary Epidemiology
Fields of Research (2020): 30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3009 Veterinary sciences > 300905 Veterinary epidemiology
46 INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES > 4605 Data management and data science > 460508 Information retrieval and web search
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