On 6 April 2016, central government legislation came into force that makes it compulsory for ALL dogs that are 8 weeks or older are to be microchipped. All dog owners are also required to ensure that their contact details are kept up to date with their microchip company.
The law still also requires you to make sure that your dog wears a collar and identification tag when in a public place.
A collar and an identification tag is reasonably inexpensive and will ensure that anyone finding your dog, for example members of the public without access to a microchip scanner, will be able to contact you and reunite you with your dog as quickly as possible without incurring any fines or charges.
A microchip is slightly larger than the size of a grain of rice. It consists of a tiny computer chip housed in a type of glass made to be compatible with living tissue. The microchip is implanted between the dog's shoulder blades under the skin with a needle and special syringe. Little or no pain is experienced - most dogs do not seem to even feel it being implanted.
How does the microchip work?
Once in place, the microchip can be detected immediately with a reader that uses radio waves to detect the chip. The device scans the microchip, and then displays a unique code. Once the microchip has been implanted we will register it with the microchip company.
Why should I microchip my dog?
The chip identifies the dog to you and could be the only means to prove the dog is yours should there be an ownership dispute.
All vets and local authorities scan stray dogs, so it enables the dog to be returned to you should the collar/tag be removed.
If your dog gets stolen it can be the only means to prove ownership.
Dogs that we collect that do not have any form of identification are classed as strays and are taken to a kennels which can be stressful for the dog.
Having your dog micro-chipped can save you the cost of kennelling fees should it escape.
If your address or telephone number changes do not forget to contact the microchip company and update your details.
What happens if I don't get my dog microchipped?
If a dog is not microchipped, the Council may serve a notice on the keeper of the dog to require them to have the dog microchipped within 21 days. If the keeper fails to arrange for this, the Council may take possession of the dog, microchip it and recover the costs from the keeper for this.
Where can I get my dog microchipped?
Most vets will do this for you and occasionally the Dog Wardens host chipping days. Private companies also offer microchipping services.
We collect over 300 stray dogs each year and tragically too many of them are never reunited with their owners. If they are not claimed they will be re-homed. It is important that your dog has identification at all times. Collars and tags are essential, but they can be removed if your dog gets stolen.