A survey of 3,000 UK-based dog owners carried out by OnePoll on behalf of the Dogs Trust reveals that one in five dog owners are not prepared for the changes to the microchipping law that will come into force in England, Wales and Scotland in April 2016. 45% of existing owners have not chipped their dogs.
Approximately half of dogs that currently find their way into rescue shelters cannot be rehomed either because they are not chipped or because the chip details have not been kept up to date. From April 6th, 2016 all dogs must be microchipped and registered to an approved database by the time they are 8 weeks old.
Microchips are not proof of ownership but the person to whom the chip is registered is regarded for legal purposes as the keeper of the animal. The keeper can be served with a notice requiring microchipping within 21 days. Details, including changes of telephone number must be kept up to date on the register.
Failure to chip or to keep details updated can be subject to a £500 fine.
Only trained implanters can microchip animals. Vets will microchip your dog for a fee but there are several local authority-run free microchipping events and it is often offered at dog shows and similar events. The Dogs Trust runs free sessions around the country as do local authorities and rescue orgnisations.
Don’t be one of the 45% – get your dog microchipped now!