Update from DEFRA. You can get another chip implanted even if the faulty chip is still working. Please copy and take to your vet.
Failure of Virbec microchips
Virbac have identified a functionality issue with some microchips distributed since 2010. A small number of these microchips have recently malfunctioned.
The following chips with these batch numbers need to be replaced:
How do I know if my pet is affected?
Virbac have contacted all of their veterinary surgeon customers with a list of their clients who have received these microchips and they have also written to all of the pet owners that may be affected, advising them to get their pets’ chips checked. If you have not received a letter but think your pet may be affected, speak to your vet.
What should I do if the microchip has failed?
In the event your vet is unable to scan and read the original microchip, the pet must be re-chipped. If the pet has been previously prepared for travel, then it must be re-prepared in accordance with pet travel rules and a new pet passport issued.
Your vet should note in Section XI. OTHERS of the new EU pet passport that there is another microchip present that cannot be scanned and read, in case the fault is intermittent and the chip is picked up at the port when the pet is checked for compliance for entry to the UK.
What should I do if the microchip has not failed?
We recommend that a new chip is inserted in case the existing chip fails at some point in the future. The following procedure must be carried out in order to maintain a pet’s compliance:
- The original microchip, implanted prior to the initial rabies vaccination, must be scanned and a reading made.
- Having gained a reading, a new microchip may then be inserted.
- Section XI. OTHERS of the EU pet passport may then be annotated by your vet to read (or similar):
“On (date), I scanned and read microchip number (original microchip number). Upon gaining this reading, I inserted microchip number (new microchip number) on the same day, in accordance with Defra requirements.”
This statement does not need to be exactly as shown, but the dates of chip readings and the numbers of the chips must be stated and this statement should be signed and stamped by the Official Veterinarian.
Provided this procedure is carried out as stated above, the pet will remain fully compliant with UK entry requirements under EU pet movement rules.
Alternatively, pet owners may choose to fully re-prepare their animal in line with the failed microchip procedures outlined above, and have a new pet passport issued, However that would mean having to wait 21 days from the date of vaccination before the pet was allowed to enter/re-enter the UK.
Post from Dog owner stuck in France 2nd October 2012.
“The faulty microchips start with 9000 you can also view an update on defras website. We know this is correct as we are currently stuck in France awaiting the 21 day period to expire before we can return with our dog after obtaining a new pet passport. There are some dogs in quarantine now due to this issue. Virbac are covering additional costs. We were lucky and were able to stay in France with the dog, it was however, a big drama and initially we had nowhere to go. We ended up in a tent for a week but now are in a gite courtesy of virbac who also paid for the pet passport. Some people had no choice but to return to the uk and go down the import license route and quarantine due to work commitments. The chip failed as we were about to return to the uk after working out here since the 1st of may, the chip worked on the way out as he was scanned with Brittany ferries, the chip was implanted in 2010 and worked for that time up to some point since may. So I recommend a chip replacement even if the current chip is working as it can fail at any time.
Virbac should have made the issue more widely known, we and many others could have prevented our current situations”
Previous information on the Virbac microchip was that the fault happened once the microchip heated up to the dogs or cats body temperature. Virbac have given a deadline for replacing microchips that are not working up to the 31st October, 2012.
We do have someone looking into this story for us and hopefully Virbac will offer some useful information!
We really need to get the microchip industry regulated, please sign our petition!