A new law was introduced this year, which means that it will now be compulsory in England to microchip dogs. However, microchipping should be so much more important to pet owners than simply complying with the law.
I have worked as a Veterinary Nurse for many years. One of the most frustrating, upsetting and all too common incidents, comes when you are unable to reunite a pet with their owner.
Members of the public regularly brought animals in trying to help find their missing owners. A dog that was found alone, a cat that had been hanging around begging for food for weeks. Worse still, a pet that had been involved in a traffic accident and was seriously injured.
After delivering any vital care needed for injured animals, one of the first things that is performed on a “stray” is microchip detection.
We use simple electronic scanner. The microchip will be detected and provide us with a unique number. The owner will then be contacted immediately. Reunions can be happen in minutes, pets can go home to their loving owners and those owners can stop worrying!
The new law which was introduced on 6th April 2016, makes microchipping compulsory for dogs with a £500 fine being introduced. There is no upper age limit and puppies must be microchipped and registered by the time they are 8 weeks old. It’s also important that details are kept up to date. If you move or change your telephone number it will be compulsory to notify the microchip database.
This new law is a positive one. It will it make irresponsible owners, responsible for their dogs. Better still, should a dog go missing, they can go home without the stress of sitting in a kennel with strangers for hours, days or even weeks.
The new law focuses on dogs but please don’t forget about your cats! I have come across many stray cats. I even had a few come to live with me. Cat’s like to explore, go on their own little adventures and suddenly be quite a way from home and become lost. Collars can go missing and strangulation can occur with non quick release types should they get caught up. I would never consider them as fool proof method of identification.
If your pet is on regular medication for an illness, it’s even more vital to be able to trace them quickly so they don’t spend too long without it. Pets can deteriorate very quickly. Even if they were to be brought to a vet, they would have no way of knowing what medication an animal was receiving unless the animal could be identified and the owner contacted.
Microchipping isn’t just for dogs and cats. You can even get tortoises microchipped! I have seen quite a few “stray” tortoises too! You’d be surprised just how far they can travel!
A microchip is inserted in the same way an injection is administered. The procedure is slightly different for reptiles and should be carried out by a specialist vet.
As Veterinary Nurses, we have received the appropriate training to implant microchips. We able to microchip your pets in the comfort of your own home. Microchipping is a quick procedure.
The added benefit of having it done at home means your pet will be calm and happy in their familiar environment. You can find out more about our nurse clinics here.