Time is running out for dog owners to get pets chipped
Dog owners are being reminded that time is running out to get their pets micro-chipped
From April 6th all dogs over eight weeks old will be legally required to get registered under new regulations, with penalties possible for those that flout the law.
After April 6, 2016 it will be an offence to transfer a dog older than eight weeks to live with another keeper without being micro-chipped and that the details of the current keeper have been registered. After transfer it is the responsibility of the new keeper to ensure that the details on the database are updated.
Those who choose not to register their dog run the risk of a £500 fine.
The microchip is the size of a grain of rice and the procedure, which is carried out by a vet or trained microchip implanter, takes only a few minutes and should last a lifetime. It's thought about two-thirds of dogs have already been micro-chipped with 1,400 dogs having been registered in South Ayrshire alone.
Councillor John McDowall, South Ayrshire Council's Portfolio Holder for Sustainability and the Environment, said: "Dog owners have a duty of care to other members of the public and this measure will hopefully reduce the number of stray and lost dogs by helping reunite them with their owners.
"It should also make it much easier for stolen dogs to be reunited with their rightful owners.
"Of course, it must be stressed that a microchip on its own is not enough, and owners must ensure that they keep their details on the database up to date."
Once micro-chipped, the owner's and pet's details are stored in a microchip database along with the microchip's unique 15 digit code.
When a missing pet is found, an animal professional (for example a Police Dog Warden) will scan the pet revealing the microchip's unique 15 digit code, and contact the microchip database the dog is registered with. After security checks, customer care staff will release contact details so that the dog can be reunited with its owner.
To date Dogs Trust have chipped almost 26,000 dogs free of charge in Scotland. Dog owners can still get their dog chipped for free by appointment at Dog Trust's two Scottish rehoming centres in Glasgow and West Calder.