Microchip vs. tattoo - What should you use?
Before the RFID technology animals where marked with a tattoo on the ear or inner leg side. The benefit was that the number was visible from the outside but it had major disadvantages.
Here is a comparison:
|- A tattoo fades relatively quickly and is not readable then.||+ The chip number can be read during the animal's whole life span with a scanner.|
|- Even a freshly made tattoo is difficult to read on dark skin.||+ The skin color doesn't matter at all.|
|- The animal has to be touched to raise the ear or the leg. It is not easy when the animal is scared or agressive.||+ The scanner can be hold several cm away from the animal.|
|- Tiny animals can not be tattooed.||+ The mini chip (1,4 x 8,5 mm) is suitable for nearly all animals.|
|- The animal has to be put under anesthesia during the process. It is costly and time cunsuming.||+ If operated correctly, the chip can be set in seconds without any harm for the animal.|
|- There are no standards for the code, every vet has its own system. It makes it hard to identify the owner correctly.||+ The structure of the chip number is ISO standardized. The manufacturer can be identified easily.|
|- The codes are not unique. There are no control mechanisms to guarantee that.||+ ICAR controls the numbers and the manufacturers. The number on certified chips is unique and the ISO standards guaranteed.|
|- Tattoos can be forged easily.||+ The chip number is read only and provides a certain degree of security.|
|- The tattoed ear can be cut off by crimninals.||+ The chip stays safe under the animals skin.|
|+ The number is visible from the outside.||- The chip nuber can be read with a special scanner only.|