Dog microchipping in England is compulsory from April 2016, due to the aim to decrease the number of stray dogs. They will be coded with the owner’s details and those without their dog being microchipped will be fined up to £500. Official statistics revealed that more than 100,000 dogs are lost or dumped each year, costing the taxpayer and welfare charities a staggering £57m.
From the 6th of April 2016, all dogs must be microchipped and registered to an approved database by the time they are 8 weeks old. The recommended youngest age for microchipping is 6 weeks old.
For every dog that isn’t microchipped after April 2016 and get served a notice requiring them to have their dog chipped, they have 21 days to do so. There are no exemptions with regarding age. A dog will legally be exempt from being microchipped, only when a vet certifies that it cannot be microchipped for health reasons. There is also no minimum age specified in the regulations that a puppy has to be before getting microchipped.
The microchip will have an expiry date on the packaging but this is just for implantation purposes and not an expiry date for the function of reunification. The microchip will not act as a GPS tracker and will need to be scanned by a handheld scanner. When the microchip is scanned, the database that you have chosen will be contacted.
When your dog is microchipped, you will be given a document, containing the microchip number and database with contact details of where the record will be held. There is also a penalty if you don’t keep your database details up to date, resulting in a £500 fine.
There are many different databases for pet microchipping, your pet’s details and your contact details are very important. You should consider where this information is being stored and the service that accompanies this.