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We recently adopted a new puppy from a no-kill animal rescue that is some distance from our home. He has quickly become a loved family member. I contacted the micro-chip company to update his chip with our family contact information. They told us we needed permission from the owner of the dog rescue to change the primary contact. We called the owner and she refused. I contacted a supervisor at the chip company and they called her as well. She refused again. The chip company just notified me that this stranger at the dog rescue who we only met briefly will always be the primary contact for our dog. It seems we now own our new puppy but she still owns the chip that is in him. There was never any paperwork signed regarding the chip contact information and it was never brought up during the adoption process. This was a big shock and surprise. I respect and admire this lady for her sacrifices and what she does for these animals but we are heart-broken over this. I don't know if this stranger is reliable as a primary contact or if she would even call us if that dreaded day ever came when our dog was missing. My biggest fear is that she would not return him or that she may not be available as a contact two, five or twelve years from now. She is an elderly woman and likely won't be working or may have health issues during our dog's normal life span. We love and care for our dog and only want what's best for him. It's my belief that the family members should be the primary as well as the secondary contacts for their own dog's micro-chip. Leaving this stranger as the primary contact (in my own opinion) puts our new baby at risk. We would be the ones available around the clock, driving all night through the neighborhoods with no sleep looking for him if he ever went missing....not her. I actually have years of experience in the pet industry but my knowledge of micro-chip rules/laws is limited especially in an adoption situation like this. Please let us know what our options are or if anyone has any ideas on how to resolve this. Unfortunately talking with her seems like a dead-end street and the micro-chip company won't break their policy. Thanks for any advice you can offer.
 

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Many rescues and breeders do this, in case the adopter/buyer ever takes the pet to a shelter (sure, you wouldn't do it, but. . .ugh. Lots of people do). Usually everything works out fine. Are you the secondary contact? Can you work out an agreement with her to put yourself as the primary contact, and put her as the secondary?
 

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That does sound a bit odd to me. The no-kill rescue I adopted from had me fill out the forms for contact info on this micro-chip when I adopted him. I've gone online on my own and updated this info with a good full body picture and my vet's office contact info.

I understand why as Willowy said the rescue group might want to keep themselves on as A contact but shouldn't fight for primary contact IMO.
 

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I agree with willowy- if you're able to put yourself as the secondary contact it shouldn't be a problem. Many rescues want to be able to track their dogs in case they end up in a shelter again.

If you're really worried about ID, you could get a tattoo as well.
 

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This is standard operating procedure for most rescues. Kabota is chipped with the rescue as the primary and me as the secondary.

I'm not sure why you think the rescue would be an unreliable contact. This woman devotes her life to these dogs, she's going to flake on a lost dog? I think not. Plus, if you're the secondary, you'll get called if she doesn't respond.

There's a reason for this, you know. Many people have adopted dogs then ditched them at the shelter. Plus, some people just can't be bothered to contain their dogs. As the rescue told me, if they get called on Kabota once, they'll call me and have me pick him up. If they get called twice in a year, I probably shouldn't have the dog unless extraordinary circumstances occurred.

Bottom line: the rescue cares about the dog, not your feelings.
 

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My opinion is that if there is nothing in the contract specifically regarding the chip and the contract states that you OWN the dog, the micro-chip company should put you as the primary as the OWNER and a previous owner, private person or rescue, should not be able to block that. Dogs are property, if he isn't legally co-owned, then he's yours.

I understand rescues desire to keep track of the dogs, but particularly a rescue out of the area and run by mainly one person (regardless of age, any one person could fall sick or become unavailable), they should not be the primary contact.
I adopted Chester from a local humane society and they put the chip in my name then and there. The rescue I volunteer with provides the chip info and lets people change it to their contact, the contracts reserve the right to check up on the dog and a return clause (no giving the dog to a third party, if the person can't keep him, he comes back to the rescue)

If you can't get anywhere at all with the chip company, you could have him chipped again. It might be a little confusing if two chips popped up on a scan, but hopefully they'd then call both numbers.

Edit to add:
Some rescues are notoriously bad at answering the phone, anyone that can't be contacted 24/7 by cell phone shouldn't be primary contact.
 
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