From Wednesday 6 April a new law will come into effect requiring every dog in England and Scotland over the age of eight weeks to be microchipped.

The measures are aimed at cracking down on vicious or illegal dogs as well as helping protect animals that may become lost.

Dogs will need to be microchipped and registered with their keepers' contact details. All keepers, including breeders, will need to keep these details up to date.

The microchip is the size of a grain of rice and its information about the dog and the owner's contact details will be officially held on an approved micro-chip database.

Councillor Steve Evans, City of Wolverhampton Council Cabinet Member for City Environment, said: "The council spends around £65,000 a year picking up strays and reuniting them with their owners.

"This year we expect to have picked up about 500 dogs but unfortunately it isn't always a happy ending for all the strays.

"This law will offer some reassurance to those responsible dog owners that should they become separated from their pets there is a very good chance they can be reunited sooner if the pet is fitted with a microchip detailing their contact details.

"I would urge dog owners to contact their local vets about microchipping if they haven't already done so."

Once the new rules come into effect, if a dog without a microchip comes to the attention of the authorities, its keeper could be served with a notice requiring the dog be microchipped, and may face criminal prosecution and a £500 fine if they do not comply with the notice.

The only exemption is where a vet has certified in writing that a dog is unfit to have the chip fitted.

More details about the law change, where to access free mircochipping, and how to update your details, are available by visiting Type=links;Linkid=7064;Title=Dogs Trust - Microchipping;Target=_blank;.

  • released: Wednesday 23 March, 2016