The GSDCA-WDA Tattoo and Microchip Service

The GSDCA-WDA has implemented the Tattoo/Microchip and DNA programs in support of the German Shepherd Dog breed program. They are designed to supplement the established AKC DNA program and to provide a certified record of tattoo identification on each dog's registration papers.

Tattoo/Microchip Identification Guideline

In order to enter and compete in GSDCA-WDA events all German Shepherd Dogs over 12 months of age must have tattoo or microchip identification. German Shepherd Dogs that were born in the United States on or after January 1, 2005, must have their tattoo or microchip number certified on their original 4-generation AKC pedigree. Three-generation AKC pedigrees for German Shepherd Dogs born prior to January 1, 2005 will continue to be accepted for identification certification and for entry into GSDCA-WDA events. AKC pedigrees that have been tattoo or microchip certified by USCA will be accepted at all GSDCA-WDA events provided they meet the 3 or 4-generation requirement above.

The purpose of this service is to record the permanent identification of German Shepherd Dogs born in the United States that are registered with the American Kennel Club. Once the tattoo or microchip number is properly recorded with the GSDCA-WDA office, it will be added to the original Certified American Kennel Club four-generation pedigree and then embossed with the official GSDCA-WDA seal.

All dogs must have a tattoo or microchip. Tattoos (preferably in the right ear) must be legible. Tattoos must be verified, and the GSDCA-WDA Tattoo Verification Form completed by a licensed Veterinarian. Tattoos should be at least five numbers or letters, or any combination of numbers and letters. Each dog must be assigned its own tattoo number. Do not use the dog’s name, your name, or your social security number. A series of numbers and letters that designate your kennel name, the puppy’s birth year, the litter number (letter), and the number born or something similar is the common practice and is suggested.

Example: HS03W3: HS=Haus Smith, 03=born in 2003, W=W litter, 3=3rd puppy born.

Dogs that are microchipped must be presented with a scanner capable of reading the microchip. It is the owner’s responsibility to provide the scanner.


For Tattoo Certifications:

  1. Complete your portion of the GSDCA-WDA Tattoo Verification Form
  2. Have your Veterinarian complete his/her portion of the GSDCA-WDA Tattoo Verification Form
  3. Complete the GSDCA-WDA Application for Tattoo/Microchip Certification Form Application (updated 06/2014)

For Microchip Certifications:

Complete the GSDCA-WDA Application for Tattoo/Microchip Certification Form Application (updated 06/2014)

Payment Instructions:

  1. Make your check or money order payable to the GSDCA-WDA. If paying with MasterCard or Visa, please call the GSDCA-WDA office directly.
  2. Enclose the original Certified AKC 4 generation pedigree.
  3. Enclose a copy of the AKC Registration Certificate.
  4. If microchip identification, enclose proof of microchipping from the microchip registry; i.e. Avid, Home Again, etc.
  5. If Breed Surveyed, the original Breed Survey Certificate (Korschein) shall suffice as acceptable proof of the verification of the tattoo requirement if issued by a country whose Breed Survey Certificates are accepted under the rules and guidelines of the GSDCA-WDA and the SV.

Send Certified or Express USPS, UPS, FedEx or by some other traceable means to the GSDCA-WDA office address (call for the physical address if sending by means other than USPS).

Please keep copies of the documents and forms for your records. The GSDCA-WDA will not be responsible for documents lost in the mail.
The original AKC pedigree will be returned to you via Certified U.S. Postal Service.

NOTE: The above Guidelines do not apply to foreign born German Shepherd Dogs with an FCI Kennel Club registration document that includes a tattoo or microchip number. However, if the registration document does not include a tattoo or microchip number then the above Guidelines for registering the tattoo microchip number with GSDCA-WDA will apply with the exception that the original FCI Kennel Club pedigree must also be submitted.

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