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

Article


Croton, Catriona, McGreevy, Paul, Masters, Sophie, Richards, Leonie, Soares Magalhaes, Ricardo, Peaston, Anne, Combs, Martin, Irwin, Peter, Lloyd, Janice, Wylie, Claire and Wilson, Bethany. 2019. "Identification of Microchip Implantation Events for Dogs and Cats in the VetCompass Australia Database." Animals. 9 (7), pp. 1-10. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9070423
Article Title

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

ERA Journal ID200143
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsCroton, Catriona (Author), McGreevy, Paul (Author), Masters, Sophie (Author), Richards, Leonie (Author), Soares Magalhaes, Ricardo (Author), Peaston, Anne (Author), Combs, Martin (Author), Irwin, Peter (Author), Lloyd, Janice (Author), Wylie, Claire (Author) and Wilson, Bethany (Author)
Journal TitleAnimals
Journal Citation9 (7), pp. 1-10
Article Number423
Number of Pages10
Year2019
PublisherMDPI AG
Place of PublicationSwitzerland
ISSN2076-2615
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9070423
Web Address (URL)https://www.mdpi.com/2076-2615/9/7/423
Abstract

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.

KeywordsCats; Dogs; Microchip; Strays; VetCompass Australia
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020300905. Veterinary epidemiology
460508. Information retrieval and web search
Byline AffiliationsUniversity of Queensland
University of Sydney
University of Melbourne
University of Adelaide
Charles Sturt University
Murdoch University
James Cook University
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
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