Dogs and Chips … April deadline!

2 Dogs - Boris & Maisie

Dogs and Chips – is this the latest food craze? No.. it’s a blog to remind dog owners that a new UK law comes into force on April 6th 2016 regarding your precious pooches. If your lovely family pet doesn’t already have a microchip then it’s something you need to take action on promptly or be faced with a fine of £500.

From 6 April 2016 all dogs in England, Scotland and Wales will be legally required to be microchipped and their details registered on one of the authorised databases. The largest database in the UK is Petlog. The idea behind this move has been campaigned for by numerous animal pressure groups working collectively as the Microchipping Alliance to encourage all dog owners to take responsibility for keeping their pet. This alliance includes the British Veterinary Association, the Kennel Club, the Dogs Trust and the RSPCA.

How the system will work

Under the law you are obliged to keep your details up to date on the database. Police and local authority employees will be issued with microchip reader scanners so that instant enforcement of the law can be carried out. But more importantly from an owners point of view if your dog gets lost or stolen then it will be possible to trace you easily when the dog is found and scanned. Sadly we read  lots of reports of dogs that have got lost and their owners cannot be found currently. A microchip would help reunite them more easily. A time window ( 21 days ) will be allowed for the owner to get the chipping done if their dog is found to be without a chip after 6 April 2016. If the dog is still found to be without a microchip a £500 fine for failing to comply will be issued.

Essentially if you sell or otherwise pass the dog onto another person, you, as the previous keeper are required to register the new keeper. The legislation used the word ‘keeper’ rather than ‘owner’. Also if your dog dies, you must inform the database where you registered your dog’s details. Puppies must be chipped at their second set of vaccinations around the time they are weaned – at 8 plus weeks. So My Life Pack section 7 Pets will be the place to record these details about your pets and our organisers check list function will remind you to update the database if you happen to move home in future. The Pet Owners Association website has some more information here on the reasons behind this new requirement of looking after your family pets.
3 golden retriever puppies in gardenThe Dog’s Trust has a list of frequently asked questions about microchipping including:
– Will it hurt my dog? No, the procedure should cause no more discomfort than a standard vaccination. No anaesthetic is required.
– Cost? Animal charities e.g. The Dog’s Trust amongst others are offering FREE microchipping because they want to help owners get as many dogs as possible covered by the new scheme. Some local councils are also providing free microchipping events. Vet’s not covered by the free scheme might charge about £20-30 but this depending on your area and your vet practice.
– Where can I get my dog microchipped? Your own vet can probably provide a microchipping service. They might charge so look for vets that are working with The Dog’s Trust to offer free microchipping events at locations around the UK over the next few weeks of 2016

So you need to take action NOW if your dog is not already microchipped and as many owners aren’t aware of this new requirement there may be a waiting list; especially for the free events; as the deadline of April 6th 2016 approaches. I hope that you are able to take advantage of the free offers that are currently available as we do like to help our readers and clients save money where possible.

We’d welcome your comments on this post ( and very happy to see photos of your lovely pets ) so please add them below and feel free to share this blog.