A Puppy looking at the Grass

The History of the Pet Microchip

A lot of us ask questions about pet microchips but one question we sometimes do not ask is how was the first microchip developed. Despite microchips not setting out at first specifically to cater to the needs of pets, they later became one of the best methods to reunite pets with their families. Here we share the history of pet microchips and how they became what they are today.

Cat reaching with his paw

The Origins of the Microchip

Many people argue that the origins of the microchip were first created in the Texas Instruments Labs. The development of the microchip began when Texas Instruments hired Jack Kilby in 1958. Kilby worked alone all summer attempting to make an integrated circuit into a chip prototype. Despite the government and private sectors contributing to the development of the microchip, Japanese companies were already placing millions of dollars into development so the U.S. was left in the dust.

However, the inventor of Intel, Robert Noyce created the first modern microchip we use today in our laptops and desktops. Therefore, many minds went into the invention of the microchip as various people refined and reinvented it.

Even the government became involved with a microchip in the 1970s as part of DARPA (Defense Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency). So, many people contributed to the technology we have today.

Okay, what about the Pet Microchip?

The Microchip for pets was introduced in 1986, and it slowly grew to popularity thanks to education and activism. In the 1990s, The Microchip Trade Association set out to place stricter regulations on microchips. This organization advocates for laws to be set in place so microchips are mandatory for pets. In 2016, in the UK, a law was created to mandate that all dogs needed microchips.

In the US, mandatory microchipping is not yet required, but it may be a possibility in the future.

In 1996, the ISO standards for microchips were developed. This standard allows for all microchips to be compatible with the same scanner. This is helpful because it is easier to scan for a microchip if all of them are the same.

Pet With an Owner

Myths about the Pet Microchip


Some blogs have cited a study done in the 1990s on rats with microchips to convince people that microchips can cause cancer. However, after further scientific investigation, no correlation was found between cancer and microchip implantation on animals. It is why the (FDA) approved the use of microchips in animals and humans.

Microchips Today

Despite microchips being a great tool to reunite pets and families, only 6 out of 10 people have taken the correct steps to register their microchips. Statistics prove that pets are twice as likely to be returned to their owner if they wear a microchip, yet people still are not registering their microchip correctly. It is why we set out to educate the population on the benefits of microchips. A pet can get lost at any time, and it is why microchips are a must-have.

A Walk Through Microchip History

My Pet's Chip Logo

We hope you enjoyed the short history lesson on microchips and how they were developed. As you can see, technology continues to improve and with the advancement of technology, we are always working to innovate when it comes to microchips and our memberships. Our goal is to reunite families with their pets, and if you are interested in learning how you can make sure your pet is returned, click here to learn more about our services.