Dog Owners Required to Chip Their Dogs by April

Rhondda Cynon Taf Council is reminding owners they must have their dogs micro-chipped by April 6 of this year.

From that date, it will become law that all dogs in Wales must be micro-chipped, after Assembly Members voted to approve new regulations back in October 2015.

As an incentive to dog-owning residents, the service, based at the Animal Shelter in Dinas, Rhondda, is offering free micro-chipping for dogs (subject to pre-booking and availability).

After April 6, micro-chipping will still be available via the Animal Warden Service, but there will be a £10 charge.

Micro-chipping is an easy and painless process in which a small chip is inserted into a dog. The chip electronically records details of the pet, such as its name, breed and age, as well as contact details for the owners.

When a dog is found, it can be scanned by a warden, vet or rescue organisation that has a scanner and easily reunited with its owner – as long as it is chipped and the contact details are kept up to date.

Micro-chipping is an essential part of responsible dog ownership and it is hoped the new legislation will encourage increased responsibility, alongside the Council’s continued work to combat dog fouling, noise nuisance and public health issues from irresponsible dog ownership and dealing with illegal dog breeders.

The Micro-chipping of Dogs (Wales) Regulations 2015 will come into force on 6th April 2016. This will mean that all dog owners will legally have to have their dog microchipped, and the keepers’ details registered on an approved database.

The welfare of animals is a priority for the Welsh Government as shown the Animal Health and Welfare framework. This regulation is a part of the measure to improve dog welfare in Wales.  The regulation also includes the ban of electric shocking collars that some owners used for obedience.

Cllr Joy Rosser, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Safer Communities, Libraries and Heritage, said: “The new law means it will now be an offence to own a dog which is not micro-chipped.

“Micro-chipping your dog is quick, easy and, at the moment, free so there is no excuse. Apart from the fact it is now law, it is essential your dog is chipped so if it strays or gets stolen, it can be traced back to you and you can be reunited as quickly as possible.”

Deputy Minister for Farming and Food, Rebecca Evans, added: “I would encourage all dog owners who have not already had their dogs’ microchipped to do so as soon as they can.

“Pet owners are far more likely to be reunited with their animals if they are lost, stolen or injured if they have been micro-chipped.

“The ability to trace all dogs back to their owners should encourage more responsible ownership, breeding and help in the control of dangerous and nuisance dogs by creating a link between dog and its owner.”

Dogs will still be required by law to wear a collar with a tag of the owners name and contact details when it is out in public after the compulsory microchipping is introduced.

The Chief Veterinary Officer for Wales, Professor Christianne Glossop, said “Microchipping is a simple procedure involving the implication of a small microchip under the skin of an animal using a needle. The unique reference number stored on the microchip must then be registered on a corresponding database with the contact details of the animal’s owner.

If you have any further questions or queries, you can contact the Rhondda Cynon Taf Council Animal Warden Service via 01443 425001 or visit www.rctcbc.gov.uk

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