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Microchip Identification Project

The WSAVA has recognised Radio Frequency Identification Devices (RFID) as the gold standard for identification of companion animals. RFID devices (also known as microchips or transponders) come in a variety of types which are not all compatible. For over 10 years, the WSAVA has supported the work of the International Standards Organisation (ISO) in developing a single open standard that can be used anywhere on the globe. Universal adoption of this standard will mean that any transponder can be reliably read by any reader.

Currently transponders only store their unique identification number. Their use must be complimented by a reliable and available database which links this number to the owner and details of the animal carrying the transponder. The information in this database must be kept up to date and accessible.


The WSAVA continues to work with the ISO, promoting the adoption and implementation of the single international standard and in developing new standards for advanced transponders with additional functions. The ISO and its participating national standards associations and RFID industry representatives have been instrumental in developing a sustainable solution to the incompatibility issues that plagued this technology. This document is dedicated to detailing the work of ISO, both to date (ISO Standards 11784 and 11785) and for the future (Standards related to advanced transponders).