Has your dog got a chip on its shoulder?

4 April 2016

Cheshire West and Chester Council is urging dog owners to get their dogs micro-chipped ahead of changes to the law which come into force on Wednesday (6 April) to help return their pets if they get lost.

After that date anyone responsible for a dog, other than a puppy under eight weeks of age, must have their dog micro-chipped and have certain information recorded on a database, or they face a fine of up to £500.

The Council collects over 600 stray dogs each year and the new rules will not only help reunite lost pets with their rightful owners quickly, but will also prevent illegal breeding and bring owners to account for a dog's aggressive behaviour.

The Micro-chipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015 will also prevent a dog from being transferred to a new owner until it has been micro-chipped.

Councillor Mark Henesy, Cabinet Member for Environment and Community, said: “This is long-awaited legislation and will help up to reunite more lost dogs with their owners quickly.

“In February this year only 60 percent of the stray dogs picked up by our Dog Warden were micro-chipped and owners need to make sure that they act promptly to keep their pet safe.

“If necessary we will prosecute dog owners who don’t microchip their dog, or where the keeper’s details have not been kept up to date.” Micro-chipping is a simple procedure which involves a microchip, about the size of a grain of rice, being injected under the skin at the scruff of the dog’s neck. It costs between £10  £30 and can be carried out for free by some charities. Each microchip has a 15-digit code which is unique to the pet and can be read through a special scanner.

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