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HomeAgain Microchip is Nothing More than a Scam

Posted Tue January 27, 2009 12:00 pm, by lauralee b. written to HomeAgain

HomeAgain charges $15 per year to register a pet with a microchip in their database. I have contacted the company twice to question these charges, but my emails have been ignored. An Avid microchip costs $15 for the life of the pet. HomeAlone is a big ripoff.

Be real. For $15 per year, we can make our own stupid "lost pet" posters. If we're really upset, we can cry on our friends' shoulders. We don't need any trained professional "Lost Pet Specialists" to give us sympathy if it's going to cost us $15 per year. They don't know us or our pets anyway. We don't need HomeAlone to contact our local veterinarians for us if our pet is lost, because if our local veterinarians have scanners, they will read the microchip and contact us themselves. So why are we paying $15 per year for these "services?" In my book, they are nothing more than a scam to keep the money coming in. And by the way, advertising 24/7 care and then ignoring potential customers' inquiries is just bad business.


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by Windchyme Posted Wed February 19, 2014 @ 11:45 AM

I am a disabled person who uses a service dog. I am also a private
service dog trainer who assists others. When I got my new dog to train
for myself I went through this run around with HomeAgain about their
(then) service dog program where dogs are registered for free.

They said to send in the appropriate documents and they'd do the
registration for free. I did send in all the requested documents. Come
to find out nearly 5 years later that they never registered the chip
as promised. My service dog was vulnerable all that time. She's a
service dog, she accompanies me everywhere I go....anything could have

Now they've discontinued the service dog program. Doesn't matter, I
will never get another HomeAgain chip- EVER! I rushed to find a place
where I could register the chip reasonably. Found Petlink and
FoundAnimals.org and she is now registered at two places. The young
pup I am training was chipped with a Datamars chip for
$10...registered in two places, one free, one $20 for a lifetime.

Never again.....

by Chelliie Posted Fri November 1, 2013 @ 11:14 PM

It's a big scam.It is not even just the annual fee, it is the
practices that they use that actually can prevent you from being
reunited with your pet and your pet can even be put to sleep.

I am so worked up over their practices that I created a blog, with
screenshots, to warn others.


by Default unknown Posted Thu July 25, 2013 @ 12:39 PM

If you call in or read the full terms and conditions, youll find that
Home Again's life time enrollment fee is around $17.00. They prefer
that you stay in the yearly service, but what I've concluded is that
the yearly fee is optional; if you don't pay you still receive
service, and this fact can be found on the bills that they send
for annual payment. I felt dumb calling in and finding that if I just
read the bill completely I would have figured it out myself and not
sounded like an asshole. They also do not charge for information
updates; if you move or change a phone number you can go online and
edit your profile free of charge. In the end it's not a bad service.
found that every company has some type of activation fee, for home
again it's 17.00 and of you ignore the bill they send, you're
a limited service, of which is the basic concept of microchips; if
your pet goes missing and is scanned then home again is going to
notify you and get the pet home. They have no way of turning off the
microchips and are in no way so impersonal that they delete customer
information from their company if you don't pay.

As for the differing frequencies they have created an international
chip-all companies make chips with this frequency. This effort was so
that pets would get home regardless of the shelter or clinics
affiliation with a specific company.


by TXgungirl Posted Sun January 13, 2013 @ 11:10 PM

Hi. I know I'm a bit late to this party as they say but want to add
my two cents anyway in case another latecomer comes across this.



Some vets prepay for the Home Again service or more accurately, they
may buy the chip kits that come with preregistered chips and you can
decline to be enrolled in their service by the vet's office. It is
your choice, and your choice alone. Check with your vet ahead of time
and ask if their microchips come with prepaid service and find out
which one. I have no doubt that Home Again sells the preregistered
chips to the vet at a deeply discounted price (cheaper than the
non-registered ones) since they're probably cheaper for the vet than
the non registered chips because Home Again expects to be paid yearly
for quite a few years anyway. Crummy! Just crummy!

So, I just recently found out that I can microchip my animals myself
at home. I couldn't be more thrilled! I am definitely buying a pack
of them SOON.

I agree that paying a yearly fee, no matter the cost is incredibly

As of the time of this comment, I am looking at AKC CAR kits and Home
Again chip kits. Why you ask? The Home Again CHIP is great, just not
the company's practices. Since I intend to do this myself (I'm very
used to pet injections!), I have the choice to buy a multipack of Home
Again chips with or WITHOUT PREREGISTRATION. AKC CAR uses Trovan
chips and they too sell chips with and without preregistration. The
one thing that the Home Again CHIP (not the service) has going for it
is that it can be read by a greater number of chip readers than most
other chips (The Trovan chips come in 2 different frequencies and
there is a list of compatible readers for each on their site...see
link below). HOWEVER, if I choose the Home Again chip, I WILL NOT be
registering with their service! It really is stupid to have to pay a
yearly fee when other companies, AKC CAR, a NOT FOR PROFIT
organization in particular will charge you just $17.95 for LIFETIME
service. AND, they provide ALL of the same services as Home Again
(which they seem to lead you to believe is exclusive to them). NOT
CHARITY among other things!

So, bottom line? Get the Home Again chip if that is all your vet has.
Just decline the service, get the tag info, particularly the tag/chip
number and brand name and go to the following website:


Good luck fellow animal lovers!!!


Re: home again is not a scam by Default unknown Thu July 25, 2013 @ 12:37 PM
by Christine B. Posted Fri May 25, 2012 @ 2:56 PM

I could not agree with you more. I adopted a dog from a shelter who
was going to be put down. They knew it had a microchip but the
previous owners never updated their information so it was invalid. I
took the dog to my veterinarian and I had him scan the chip so I could
get the number. He called Home Again who told him to have me return
the dog to the shelter even though they tried to call the numbers of
the previous owners which were disconnected. I did not take the dog to
the shelter as I felt if I could find the dog online at the shelter so
could the previous owners who apparently lived in the same town
whereas I live 100 miles away! I searched for the previous owners on
Facebook and they did not respond. Return the dog to the
I called Home Again. I explained the situation. As I was placed on
hold they tried the numbers for the previous owners
again...disconnected. They agreed the microchip should be transferred,
email the form, I faxed it back immediately and paid their fee. 10
days later I check to see if the microchip has been transferred. NOT!
I call them again. They tell me the information has to be verified.
What has to be verified. I gave them my info and all the shelter
paperwork. What is there to validate. They told me up to 14 days to
get it transferred. I already made a dog tag at the local pet store
but what is really irritating is their tag with the ID number takes up
to 3 weeks. 3 weeks to engrave a number onto a dog tag and in the
meanwhile if the dog was to get lost and scanned for a microchip it
would be a mess all over again. These people are idiots..money first
and customer service last. If I could remove the chip I would!

by softmist Posted Fri September 9, 2011 @ 9:14 PM

We've had severa pets microchipped, at that I refer to whole family,
friends etc. My aunt witnessed pet control walking in her yard and
taking the dog out of the yard. She was chipped. The local dog shelter
did not contact her and had the dog up for adoption saying she was
given shots neutered and chipped. I had my dog chipped also, he
disappeared, I found him 4 towns away in a shelter. One of my friends
seen animal control take him off his runner chain. I did find him.
They wanted 100.00 fee to return him to me. Here's the beauty of it.
He was taken, in the same county. When you chip your pet or your new
pet is chipped, the animal shelters, vets, animal control are suppose
to scan the animal and contact the owner. "FREE OF CHARGE" Because you
already paid for it and it is in their so called system. They steal
your pedigree pets and neuter them, chip them, ship them to new
townships, areas, or take them home themselves to resell your precious
pets. I salute to you my unchipped bird to all you LOSERS doing this
to good people all over. May you get venom struck by a poisonous
snake, while reaching to snatch someones pets.


by kitten7 Posted Fri July 29, 2011 @ 8:58 PM

i heard that the micro chips in pets are dangerois to pets that need a
m.r.i done it can kill them.


by ddd9 Posted Mon February 2, 2009 @ 12:02 AM

Lauralee is correct. This was frustrating for vet clinics with
HomeAgain and many clinics dropped their service because of this
yearly charge. So find a clinic that does the resQ (bayer) or Avid.
The other devious thing HomeAgain did was to go into clinics and try
to confiscate the "OLD WAY CHIPs" to force clinics to convert to the
"new chips". This was pretty low too.

by Veovis W. Posted Sun February 1, 2009 @ 12:57 AM

I frankly don't care what service you pick but I do know to alot of
people who value their pet like a family member as i do and have had
the pet go missing is a great help.

On the technical aspect the reason why there is a 15$ per year charge
is not only for the service of being able to talk to someone and have
their assistance in locating your pet but is a fee to help have the
chip there to begin with. The chip is nothing more then a little
receiver and transmitter. When the scanner is moved over the chip the
signal sent generates enough electricity in the chip for it to send
back a small signal with a number in it. But that is all is a number.
There is actually no information about you or your pet on the chip but
just that number. That number is then stored in HomeAgain's servers
which when matched will show the reader all the important information
getting your pet back. And without that all important data service
the "chip" will never work.


I think your missing the point by X Jiffy Lube Tue February 3, 2009 @ 1:39 PM

Multiple chips by Christine B. Fri May 25, 2012 @ 3:00 PM

by MA Cunningham Posted Fri January 30, 2009 @ 12:01 PM

. . .do you have the service or not? If you do, then I think you
already know you should be cancelling.

If not be thankful and let it go already!


Nope by Miss Lee Fri February 13, 2009 @ 4:26 PM

by dulynoted (aka duttycalls) Posted Wed January 28, 2009 @ 8:06 AM

So purchase the one you want and let it go. I am sure many a HomeAgain
customer is happy with their product.

by Tiffy611 Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 10:54 PM

My dog went missing one week after moving 1500 miles to a new home. He
wasn't familar with the area. I would have given ANYTHING for
assistance in locating him. I got lucky and he came home 3 days later
all on his own. I then set an appointment to get him 'chipped right

I sincerely hope that you never expierience the gut wrenching fear of
having your pet missing.


Agreed by Miss Lee Fri February 13, 2009 @ 4:28 PM

by myswtghst Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 7:44 PM


Their services include A LOT of valuable things. They will work with
everyone in their network - making it a proactive, rather than
reactive, search and find. They have people on the line to help you
talk it out and to provide the assistance. They ensure that the vets
not only will scan the pet, but will be able to verify they have the
right pet and who he / she belongs to with a picture and details -
including any special needs or quirks. They also include insurance to
cover any vet treatment while the pet is lost, and a 24/7 emergency
vet phone line. To me, that's all worth $15 per year.

By the by - to this: "I have contacted the company twice to question
these charges, but my emails have been ignored."

- It took me about 16 seconds to locate the website via Google, load
it, and click the "Our Services" link to find the info I posted above.
I'm curious, also, how you contacted them - you might have better
luck (as this is a billing question) if you call the number on your
bill and ask for an explanation of the charges.


It doesn't sound like the OP is a customer: "potential customer" was used. by Donno Wed January 28, 2009 @ 12:06 AM

I was having trouble telling, based on the letter... by myswtghst Wed January 28, 2009 @ 9:05 AM

It also doesn't sound by MA Cunningham Fri January 30, 2009 @ 1:10 PM

Wow by Miss Lee Fri February 13, 2009 @ 3:51 PM

I Agree with Miss Lee by Suizou V. Tue May 18, 2010 @ 11:11 PM

by LadyMac Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 5:30 PM

"...if our pet is lost, because if our local veterinarians have
scanners, they will read the microchip and contact us themselves."

Not necessarily. There's an Avid scanner and a HomeAgain scanner. If
the vet has one and not the other, it may not register.

In my experience (and I've been a veterinary assistant for 15 years),
Home Again is a fine program and they do a lot for their customers.

by cissy Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:59 PM

My cat is chipped by the Humane Society that has contacts all over
North America. I don't beleive it cost anything when we adopted her.
Too bad I couldn't chip the kids when they were younger.


by AgilityPuppy Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:57 PM

Heck, I almost paid $500 for GPS for my dog who liked to get out and
'see the neighborhood'. Then again, my animals are my responsibility,
and totally worth it to me.

by Lisa H. Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:45 PM

I agree with the comments that say this isn't a scam. Since it'd very
clear what the pricing and policies are before you sign up.

It sounds like this isn't the company for you. I will say though as a
pet owner, having a chip that can be scanned and give the person info
about me is WAY better then putting up posters and crying on my
friend's shoulders.

One thing, I wonder if the yearly fee means that the data in their
database is more likely to be up to date? Since if I'm paying them
yearly, I'm more likely to remember/actually give them updated info if
I move or get a new phone number?


Yes, what you say is part of the service by Commander-X-23 Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:52 PM

by Maegan Z. Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:18 PM

For me $15 a year would be a small price to pay to find my cat if he
ever gets lost.


Don't Pay It!! by Miss Lee Fri February 13, 2009 @ 4:22 PM

by Chris M Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:04 PM

Don't use them? As long as they spell out what you are getting for
the money, and do what they say, I don't think it's a scam. It may
not be valuable, but I think value and scam are not always related.


by RedheadwGlasses Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:03 PM

I have microchips in my pets and I've never paid an annual fee of any
kind. Guess I did some research beforehand, eh?


Yearly pricing by Just Brenda Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:35 PM

Mine cost around $100 or so, a one-time fee when the chip was inserted n/t by RedheadwGlasses Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:36 PM

My kitty by Just Brenda Tue January 27, 2009 @ 4:40 PM

by Commander-X-23 Posted Tue January 27, 2009 @ 3:57 PM

You can choose from many companies, and choose the one that meets your

If you don't want to utilize HomeAgain's services (detailed on their
website), you can go to another company. You aren't a current
customer, and your attitude makes it clear you don't want to be. What
incentive is there to respond?

I wonder what would happen if your pet were lost, and later found
through a scan somewhere. Would you be calling it a ripoff then, and
making fun of the fact they created posters and sent out alerts in an
effort to retrieve your pet? If this isn't the "insurance" you desire
for your pet, there are competitors out there.

It sounds like this service would be attractive to some pet owners,
but if it isn't to you why not move on? I don't see how it can be
called a scam if they provide the services advertised.


competition by jrw4001 Sun March 1, 2009 @ 4:05 PM

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