RSPCA Cymru is reminding dog owners to make sure their pets are microchipped before a new law comes into place next month.
From 6 April – in just a few weeks time – it will be become a legal requirement for dogs to be microchipped in Wales and for the owners details to be kept up-to-date.
Compulsory microchipping will help to make it easier to identify the owners of those dogs that have strayed or are being mistreated, neglected, abandoned or lost.
Assistant director for external relations – Wales, Claire Lawson, said: “The introduction of compulsory microchipping will help ensure that dogs can be identified more effectively and could have a dramatic impact on tackling cruelty suffered by dogs, providing the owner’s contact details are kept up-to-date and the legislation is properly enforced.
“It also gives owners the best chance of their pets being identified and returned home if they become lost or stolen. Microchipping is not just important for dogs, but for other pets as well as it will help to identify them so they can be returned back to you.
“However, it is extremely important to register the chip with a national database and update your contact details if you move house or change phone number. More information can be found at www.rspca.org.uk/chipncheck.”
The RSPCA would like to stress the importance of updating the contact details on your pet’s microchip. Sadly there are many examples of when an animal is found to have been chipped but the owners are not identifiable due to the details being out of date.
Unregistered microchip details – owner appeal launched for Harvey
One recent example is the story of Harvey the Dalmatian. Harvey was was found alone and freezing cold at a bus stop near Shedfield Common in Hampshire. He also had severe diarrhea – and was so weak he could barely lift his head or wag his tail.
Harvey was microchipped – with the chip’s registered address listed as Ynysybwl, Pontypridd – but the phone numbers on the chip were not recognised.
An appeal for information was launched to try and track down his owners. Several enquiries were made, but we were unable to track the owners down. Harvey is still in RSPCA care in Hampshire and is doing much better.
Claire Lawson added: “Harvey’s story really does show how important it is to keep the details on the microchip up to date.
“If you would like to check that your pet’s microchip details are up to date, there are many ways to find out. If you know which database your pet is registered on, you can check your details are up to date by logging in online. Or, you can contact the database team over the phone.
“To find out if your dog is microchipped, or to find out the microchip number, take him or her along to your local vet and have him scanned. Once you have the microchip number, you can use a chip checker online to find out who he is registered with.”
Dog reunited with owners after wandering away from his new home in Monmouthshire
English bull terrier, Dylan went missing from his home in Gilwern on Tuesday 14th January 2014. His owners had only recently moved to the house and Dylan managed to escape from an outdoor run he was in temporarily while builders worked on the property.
Four days later on Saturday January 18th, RSPCA Cymru received a report of a collapsed dog in Gilwern and went to investigate.
Dylan was found cowering down in a hollow. He was soaking wet, cold, dirty and shivering but fortunately uninjured. After persuading him to come out of the hollow, animal welfare officer (AWO) Sian Burton scanned Dylan and found he was microchipped and also had a note attached to his collar with a handwritten number on it.
AWO Burton said: “It was such a pleasure to be able to return Dylan to his owners who were overjoyed to be reunited with him. We deal with so many upsetting stories that it was great to be involved in this one.
“A story like this highlights the importance of making sure your pets have ID. Luckily Dylan was microchipped as well as having the note on his collar, as this could have easily have fallen off.
“I cannot stress how important microchipping your pet is. It is a quick, cheap, and a very effective way of ID’ing your pet and is a great way to reunite owners with their pets, whether lost or stolen.”
RSPCA Cymru is calling on owners who have their pets microchipped to add a Twibbon to your Facebook or Twitter profiles to help encourage others to ensure their pets are identifiable.
Please help us spread the word about microchipping and sign up to our Twibbon by visiting https://twibbon.com/Support/my-dogs-chipped-is-yours
If you would like to help the RSPCA, you can give £3 now by texting HELP to 78866 (text costs £3 + one standard network rate message). We are a charity and rely on public donations to exist.
Please follow us on Twitter and on Facebook. If you tweet or post on Facebok about this story please tag us – @RSPCACymru and tag #chipncheck
Video: Microchipping your dog #chipncheck https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QvEgayUe6WY
The legislation also involves including any distinguishing features of the dog onto the details record on the database, and the ability to record the owner’s email address (if they have one).
Pictures of Harvey attached.
Throughout March RSPCA’s Bryn-y-Maen Animal Centre in Upper Colwyn Bay is offering a special microchipping promotion for cats and dogs. The offer is only available for cats and dogs only and will be just £8 per pet. No appointment is needed.
Throughout March RSPCA’s Newport Animal Centre is offering a special offer which is microchipping for dogs, cats, and small furries for £5. No appointment is needed, but it is best to call beforehand.
To sign up to our Twibbon by visiting https://twibbon.com/Support/my-dogs-chipped-is-yours
The UK Government is bringing in similar legislation for compulsory microchipping for dogs in England, also on 6 April.
This quick procedure places a small chip, around the size of a grain of rice, underneath the animal’s skin. The chip stores an ID number, then the owner’s details are stored on a database. A special scanner can find the number which is routinely used by RSPCA inspectors, dog wardens and vets.
The code links to a database such as PetLog that contains the necessary contact information to help ensure a fast way of tracing an owner. This means that should a cat or dog go missing, their owners can be identified more quickly and easily. Owners are responsible for updating their contact details on the database.