Pet Owners

Every Lost Pet Deserves to Be Found - for FREE!

Information for Pet Owners & Rescue Groups

Protect your pets by registering their microchip numbers with your contact information in the Found Animals Registry. Then, if your pet is ever lost and picked up by a humane organization or individual, you will be contacted via phone, email, and text with information on where to pick up your pet. Create your free Pet Owner or Rescue Group account in minutes.

Our FREE, 24/7, online service allows you to register new pets, change contact information, and even transfer a pet to a new adopter, anytime, at NO charge. We’ve made it FREE and EASY to register all of your pets, regardless of their microchip brand, so consolidate all of your registrations in the Found Animals Registry.

Below you will find answers to the most frequently asked Pet Owner and Rescue Group questions about the Found Animals Registry. We also have FAQs for Shelters, Clinics, and Veterinarians, and more Microchip Resources.

How Microchipping Works

  • What is a microchip?
    A microchip is a small RFID device about the size of a grain of rice that is implanted beneath your pet's skin between the shoulder blades. The microchip contains a unique number used to identify the animal, almost like a social security number for your pet. This number links to your contact information in an online registry that allows shelters, clinics, veterinarians, and humane organizations to contact you if your lost pet is found. The microchip itself does not store your contact information.

    A microchip is not a GPS or tracking device. You cannot get information on a lost pet's location directly from the microchip. It is only when your lost pet is found, scanned, and searched in an online registry that someone will be able to contact you. This is why it is critical to keep your contact information current in a microchip registry like the Found Animals Registry. Check out our Illustrated Guide to Microchips and then register your chip for FREE.
  • My pet already has an ID tag, do I also need to microchip?
    Yes! Your pet should always have a collar with up-to-date ID tags. However, when collars and tags are damaged or lost, the microchip is your pet's only form of permanent identification.
  • Where can I get my pet microchipped?
    If you are certain that your pet does not already have a microchip, many municipal shelters, clinics, and veterinarians provide microchips for a modest fee; some even offer walk-in services. Call facilities in your area to determine availability and pricing. Don’t let cost keep you from protecting your pet. Some animal shelters and non-profit clinics offer low cost and free microchip options. Here are some suggestions on Where to Find Low Cost and Free Microchips.

    If you think your pet may already have a microchip, ask your vet to scan for one using a universal scanner (a scanner that reads all three frequencies of microchip that your pet could have). Write down the microchip number and keep it with your pet’s records.

    Once your pet is microchipped and you have the microchip number, be sure to register the chip with your contact information. Remember, a microchip is not a GPS or tracking device. It is only when your lost pet is found, scanned, and searched in an online registry that someone will be able to contact you. It is critical that you keep your contact information current in a microchip registry like the Found Animals Registry. Register your chip for FREE.
  • Does microchipping hurt my pet?
    Implanting a microchip is essentially the same as administering a vaccine. While your pet may feel a little pinch, any pain should be over very quickly. No anesthesia is required. Once the microchip has been inserted, your pet won't even know it's there. You can see just how tiny microchips are in our How Big is a Microchip? blog.

Registering Your Pet(s)

  • How do I create an account with the Found Animals Registry?
    Follow the steps below to register your pet. You can also watch a video tutorial on How to Create a Pet Owner/Rescue Group Account.

    1. To begin, you will need your pet’s microchip number handy. Not sure where to find it? See the "Where can I find my pet’s microchip number?" FAQ below for assistance.
    2. Start here and fill in all of your contact information on the page titled “Pet Owner: Create Your Account”. Remember, the more information you give us, the more ways we have to reach you if your pet is ever lost. Click next at the bottom of the page when you are done.
    3. On the next page titled, “Your Pet’s Information”, enter the microchip number and basic information about your pet. When you are done, click “Save” at the bottom of the page.
    4. You will now be taken to the “Pet Owner: My Profile” page. Here you can add an emergency or veterinary contact by clicking the red “edit” under each section. More contacts give us more people to notify if your pet is ever lost.
    5. To complete your pet’s profile, click on “My Pets” under the menu bar on the left.
    6. Select “Pet Profile” under the icon/photo for your pet. Here you can add more information about your animal. Please consider adding a photo of your pet using the button at the bottom of the page. Click "Submit" when you are finished.
    7. Congratulations! Your pet is now protected in the Found Animals Registry.
    8. To add another pet, click on “+ add another pet” at the top of the “My Pets” page. There is no limit to how many pets you can add to your account.
  • Where can I find my pet’s microchip number?
    In order to register your pet you will need its microchip number. This number will be 9, 10, or 15 digits long depending on the type of chip implanted in your pet. Each microchip has a unique number, like a social security number, that will forever be associated with your pet and only your pet.

    The microchip number should be printed on the paperwork you received from your vet when your pet was microchipped, or from the rescue group or shelter where you adopted your pet. If you cannot find your paperwork with the microchip number you will need to have your pet scanned and write down the information. Most shelters and vet clinics are happy to scan a pet for free and write down the microchip number for you. Call ahead to verify that they have a universal microchip scanner and are willing to scan your pet. Once you have your pet’s microchip number, keep this information in your pet’s records.
  • Which brands of microchip can I register with Found Animals?
    The Found Animals Registry accepts all brands and frequencies of microchip.
  • I tried to register a microchip, but it says that it is already registered. What do I do?
    There are a few reasons why you may have received an “already registered” message when trying to register a microchip in our system.

    If you recently adopted from a shelter or had your pet’s chip implanted or scanned at a clinic: Found Animals Registry works with many animal care organizations to automatically register pets at the time of adoption or microchipping. If your provider is one of our partner organizations it is possible that an account has already been created in your name using the information that you supplied at the time of service. If you provided an email address at the time of adoption/microchipping, Found Animals Registry sent you a message with information on how to log into your account. Be sure to check your spam folder for this confirmation email. If you still need assistance, Contact Us using this form. Our customer service team will get back to you within 24-48 hours.

    If you recently adopted a pet from a rescue group or private party: It is possible that your pet’s microchip is still registered to the previous owner in our system. If you are in communication with them, you can ask them to log into their Found Animals Registry account and transfer ownership to you online. Please see the Transfer Pet to New Owner FAQ for more information. Alternately, you can email a copy of your adoption paperwork to customerservice@found.org so that we can begin the process of transferring the pet to you. Please be sure that your name, date, pet information, and microchip number are clearly visible in the paperwork you send, along with the previous owner’s information.

  • The registry says my email is already in use, but I never set up an account. How can I log in?
    Found Animals Registry works with many animal care organizations to automatically register pets at the time of adoption or microchipping. If your provider is one of our partner organizations, it is possible that an account has already been created in your name using the information that you supplied at the time of service. This would mean that your email address already exists in our system. Follow these instructions to access your account:

    1. Click the red “Forgot Your Password?” link at the bottom of the “Already Registered” login box on the right side of our home page.
    2. Select the user type “Pet Owner/Rescue Group”.
    3. Enter the email address that you provided at the time of adoption or microchipping.
    4. You will receive an email at that email address with a link to update your password.
    5. Click on the link in the email and you will be taken to a page where you can create a new password.
    6. Once you have created a new password, visit our home page and log into your account using the “Already Registered” box on the right side of the page. Be sure to choose the “Pet Owner/Rescue Group” user type.
  • How do I register additional pets?
    1. Log into your Found Animals Registry account using the middle “Already Registered” box on the right hand side of our home page. Be sure to check the “Pet Owner/Rescue Group” option and remember that your user name is an email address.
    2. Once you have logged in, click “My Pets” from the menu on the left side of the screen.
    3. Now click “+ add another pet” at the top of the page (just above the search bar).
    4. Fill in your pet’s basic information and click “Save” at the bottom of the page when you are done.
    5. To complete your pet’s profile, click on “My Pets” under the menu bar on the left.
    6. Select “Pet Profile” under the icon/photo for your newly added pet. Here you can add more information about your animal. Please consider adding a photo of your pet using the button at the bottom of the page. Click "Submit" when you are finished.
    7. Note that all pets in your account will have the same contact information, emergency contact, and veterinary contact, so be sure that all information is up to date. You may edit at any time by clicking the red “edit” link under each section in “My Profile”.
  • Can I add a photo of my pet?
    Yes, please do! We highly recommend that you add a current picture of your pet. To upload a photo, select "My Pets" from the menu on the left while you are logged into your Found Animals Registry account. Then, click "Pet Profile" or the pet's icon/photo. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and use the "Choose File" button to select a photo for upload. Click "Submit" to save when you are finished.
  • My pet is already registered in another microchip registry. Can I still register with Found Animals?
    Absolutely. Registering in the Found Animals Registry is FREE and provides an added safety net for your pet.
  • What else can I do to protect my pet?
    In addition to microchipping your pet and registering your contact information in the Found Animals Registry, we recommend that every pet wear an external ID tag on their collar. While microchips are the only reliable form of permanent identification for pets, a good old fashioned ID tag can often be the fastest way to get Fido or Fluffy home. We recommend sturdy tags that will stand the test of time, engraved with at least two phone numbers, including area codes. You can purchase stylish and affordable tags for dogs and cats from our Adopt & Shop store and feel good knowing that all proceeds go to programs that help pets.

    You should also consider licensing your pet in accordance with your local regulations, and having your pet wear a license tag on its collar. Licensing requirements vary widely, but a license on your pet’s collar lets an animal control officer know that your pet is up to date on vaccinations and has a family waiting at home.
  • Where can I purchase ID tags for my pet’s collar?
    The Found Animals Adopt & Shop online store offers sturdy, stylish, and affordable ID tags for dogs and cats. And, you can feel good shopping with us knowing that all proceeds go to programs that help pets.

Lost Pets

  • My pet is lost! What should I do?
    Losing a beloved pet is a frightening experience for anyone. If your pets are microchipped and registered with current contact information, they have the best possible chance of making it home quickly if they are found. Waiting for news is a helpless feeling, but fortunately, there are several things you can do right now to help increase the chances of your pet returning home safely.

    Remember, a microchip is not a GPS or LoJack. A microchip will help your pet get home once someone has found your pet and taken it to a shelter or veterinarian to be scanned. Once your pet has been scanned, the finder can locate your contact information using the Found Animals Registry, so be sure that your pet’s microchip is registered with up-to-date contact information.

    If your pet is ALREADY registered with Found Animals Registry:

    1. Log into your Found Animals Registry account using the middle “Already Registered” box on the right hand side of our home page. Be sure to check the “Pet Owner/Rescue Group” option and remember that your user name is an email address.
    2. Once you have logged in, verify that the contact information in your profile is complete and up to date. If you need to change anything, click the red “edit” link under each section.
    3. Click on “My Pets” and verify that your pet’s profile is up to date and has a current photo. You can edit your pet’s profile by clicking “Pet Profile” under their icon/photo. Click "Submit" when you are finished.
    4. You can also flag your pet as lost by going to "My Pets" and clicking "My Pet is Lost" under the pet icon/photo.

    If your pet is NOT YET registered with Found Animals Registry:

    1. Create an account for your pet now so that you can be contacted if your pet is found and its microchip is scanned by a shelter or veterinarian. You can watch our tutorial video on How to Create a Pet Owner/Rescue Group Account.
    2. Once you have created an account for your pet, you can flag your pet as lost by going to "My Pets" and clicking "My Pet is Lost" under the pet icon/photo.

    See our What To Do When You Lose a Pet blog for other immediate actions you can take to try to locate your pet.
  • I found a pet! What should I do?
    If you find a lost pet, first check to see if it is wearing a collar with ID tags. If so, contact the owner using the information on the ID tag. If the pet does not have ID tags, take it to a nearby shelter, veterinarian or humane organization and have the pet scanned to determine if it has a microchip. If a microchip number is found, follow these steps:

    Start with the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) Pet Microchip Lookup tool. Follow the instructions below or watch our video tutorial on How to Use the AAHA Pet Microchip Lookup Tool.

    1. Visit www.petmicrochiplookup.org
    2. Enter the pet’s microchip number in the search bar at the top of the page and click "Submit". If the chip is registered with a participating registry, the tool will provide you with contact information for the registry (be patient, the search takes a few seconds).
    3. Contact the registry listed to get in touch with the pet owner. This contact and reunification process will vary by registry.
    4. If no pet owner information is on file with a participating registry, the Pet Microchip Looku tool will tell you who manufactured the pet’s chip. Call the chip manufacturer as they may have more information or be able to connect you with the organization that implanted the chip.

    If the lost pet’s microchip is registered with the Found Animals Registry, you can start a Found Pet Alert online to contact the pet owner.

    1. Enter the pet’s microchip number (and verify it) in our online Found Pet Alert tool and click “Submit”.
    2. Fill in the form with your contact information. Required fields are marked with an asterisk. This information will be provided to the registered pet owner so that they can contact you to pick up their pet. Click “Submit” when you are finished.
    3. Within minutes of starting a Found Pet Alert, the Found Animals Registry will automatically contact the pet owner and any emergency or rescue contacts via phone, text, and email with information on how to pick up the pet at your location.

    Please note that this Found Pet Alert tool is intended for individuals. Shelters and veterinarians with Found Animals Registry accounts can access other features by logging into their accounts. Consult the FAQs for Shelters, Clinics, and Veterinarians for detailed instructions.
  • What happens when someone finds my lost pet?
    Remember, a microchip is not a GPS or LoJack. A microchip will help your pet get home once someone has found your pet and taken it to a shelter or veterinarian to be scanned. Once your pet has been scanned, the finder will locate your contact information using the Found Animals Registry and start a Found Pet Alert. This Found Pet Alert will automatically call, text, and email you with information on how to pick up your pet. The Found Pet Alerts will continue for up to four days or until the alert is turned off, either by you, or by the animal care facility that triggered the alert.
  • What is a Found Pet Alert?
    A Found Pet Alert allows someone who has found a lost pet to alert the pet owner so that they can pick up the pet. Within minutes of starting a Found Pet Alert, the Found Animals Registry will automatically contact the pet owner and any emergency or rescue contacts via phone, text, and email with information on how to pick up the pet. The Found Pet Alert will use the contact information that you provided in your profile when you registered your microchip.
    The Found Pet Alerts will continue for up to four days or until the alert is turned off by either the organization that triggered the alert or by pet owner.
  • My pet is home safely. How can I turn off the Found Pet Alert calls, texts, and emails?
    We’re so glad that your lost pet has made it home! Follow the steps below or watch a tutorial video on how to How to Turn Off Found Pet Alerts.

    1. Log into your Found Animals Registry account using the middle “Already Registered” box on the right hand side of our home page. Be sure to check the “Pet Owner/Rescue Group” option and remember that your user name is an email address.
    2. Locate your pet’s icon/photo. There will be a yellow banner at the top which says “is lost!!”.
    3. Click on the red button under your pet’s icon/photo that says “Change Status to Found”. This will stop the Found Pet Alerts.

Account Maintenance

  • How do I log into my account?
    Log into your Found Animals Registry account using the middle “Already Registered” box on the right hand side of our home page. Be sure to check the “Pet Owner/Rescue Group” option and remember that your user name is an email address.
  • I forgot my password. How can I log in?
    Follow these steps to reset your password, or watch our How to Reset a Forgotten Password video tutorial.

    1. Click the red “Forgot Your Password?” link at the bottom of the “Already Registered” login box on the right side of our home page.
    2. Select the user type “Pet Owner/Rescue Group”.
    3. Enter the email address that you used as your username when you set up your account.
    4. You will receive an email at that email address with a link to update your password. Click on the link in the email and you will be taken to a page where you can create a new password.
    5. Once you have created a new password, visit our home page and log into your account using the “Already Registered” box on the right side of the page. Be sure to choose the “Pet Owner/Rescue Group” user type.
  • How do I update my contact information or pet details?
    Follow the steps below or watch our video tutorial on How to Update Owner or Pet Information.

    1. Log into your Found Animals Registry account using the middle “Already Registered” box on the right hand side of our home page. Be sure to check the “Pet Owner/Rescue Group” option and remember that your user name is an email address.
    2. Click on “My Profile” from the menu on the left side of the page.
    3. Click the red “edit” link under the information that you would like to update.
    4. Be sure to click “Submit” to save changes when you are finished editing each section.
  • How can I change my username or password?
    Follow the steps below or watch our video tutorial on How to Change Your Username or Password.

    1. To update your username or password, log into your account and select “My Profile” from the menu on the left side of the page.
    2. Now click “edit” underneath the section titled “Username and Password”.
    3. If you only want to change your username, you only need to fill in the field titled “New Username/New Email” and click “Submit” to save your changes.
    4. If you only want to change your password, you only need to fill in the three fields titled “Current Password”, “New Password”, and “Confirm New Password” and click “Submit” to save your changes.
    5. If you would like to change both your username and password, you need to fill out all of the fields EXCEPT “Alternate Email” and click “Submit” to save your changes.
  • Do you have a phone number I can call for assistance?
    No, at this time the Found Animals Registry does not offer phone support for registration or account maintenance. We’ve made registering and updating your pet’s online information fast and easy and we offer extensive FAQs and tutorial videos to support you. If you need further assistance, please Contact our customer service team and we will get back to you via email within 24-48 hours.

Transfer Pet to New Owner

  • How do I transfer a pet registered to me to a new adopter?
    Follow the steps below or watch our video tutorial on How To Transfer a Pet to a New Owner
    .
    1. Log in to your Found Animals Registry account using the middle “Already Registered” box on the right hand side of our home page. Be sure to check the “Pet Owner/Rescue Group” option and remember that your user name is an email address.
    2. Once you have logged in, click “My Pets” from the menu on the left side of the screen.
    3. Locate the pet you wish to transfer and click "Transfer Ownership" underneath the pet’s icon/photo.
    4. Enter the new owner's name and email address and indicate whether you would like to remain as the emergency contact. Click "Submit".
    5. An email will be sent to the new owner asking them to accept the transfer.
    6. Please alert the new owner to be on the lookout for this email and to follow the instructions in the email to set up their account and complete the transfer. Until the new owner completes the transfer process, the pet will remain in your account.
    7. Once the new owner completes the transfer process by adding the pet to their Found Animals Registry account, you will no longer see the pet in your account. You will be alerted when the transfer has been accepted.
    8. At any time prior to the new owner completing the transfer process, you can cancel the pending transfer by clicking on “cancel transfer pet request” underneath the pet’s icon/photo.

Rescue Groups

  • Can rescue groups use the Found Animals Registry?
    Yes! The Found Animals Microchip Registry is an excellent tool for rescue groups and other nonprofit organizations. Your group can create a free "Pet Owner/Rescue Group" profile and immediately start registering pets. There is no limit to the number of pets in your account, and you can make unlimited changes for free online, 24/7. You can even transfer pets to a new adopter right from your account. Please watch this video on Found Animals Microchip Registry Features for Rescue Groups for more information.

    Follow these instructions to create your account:

    1. Start here and fill in all of your contact information on the page titled “Pet Owner: Create Your Account”. Fields with an asterisk are required.
    2. Be sure to set the User Type field to “Rescue Group” (the default is Pet Owner).
    3. Click “Next” at the bottom of the page.
    4. On the next page titled “Your Pet’s Information” please enter the microchip number and basic information about your pet. When you are done, click “Save” at the bottom of the page.
    5. You will now be taken to the “Pet Owner: My Profile” page. Here you can add an emergency or veterinary contact by clicking the red “edit” under each section. More contacts give us more people to notify if your pet is ever lost.
    6. To complete your pet’s profile, click on “My Pets” under the menu bar on the left.
    7. Select “Pet Profile” under the icon/photo for your pet. Here you can add more information about your pet. Please consider adding a photo of your pet using the button at the bottom of the page. Click "Submit" when you are finished.
    8. To add more pets, look for the red “+ add another pet” at the top of the page. There is no limit to how many pets you can add to your account.
    9. If you would like to enable the Permanent Rescue Contact feature in your account, please Contact Us to enroll in this special program.
  • My rescue group wants to remain a primary contact for this pet. How do I enable the “Permanent Rescue Contact” feature?
    Found Animals Registry has a special feature just for rescue groups like you! When you transfer the pet’s microchip registration to the new adopter, you have the option to remain as the Emergency Contact. But you also have the option to stay on the pet's record as a Permanent Rescue Contact. This way, if the pet is lost, both you and the new adopter will be notified and will receive information on where to pick up the pet. Please watch this video on Found Animals Registry Features for Rescue Groups for more information and then Contact Us to enroll in this special program.

Didn’t see your question listed? Still need help? Contact Us using this form. Our customer service team will get back to you within 24-48 hours.

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