In April 2016, it became compulsory for every dog to have an up to date microchip.

A microchip is a small electronic device. The microchip is coded with a unique number that can be read by a scanner and then entered onto the national database alongside the owner's details.

If your dog becomes lost, if found a local authority, vet practice or animal welfare organisation will be able to see the owner's details on the national database in order to return the dog to its owner. 

Most veterinary practices provide a microchipping service for a fee of around £15 to £30.

Dogs Trust may provide a free microchipping service at rehoming centres by appointment, to find your nearest centre please visit the dog trust website.

If your dog does not have a microchip, or if your current details are not recorded on an approved database, you may be served a notice giving you 21 days to comply.

If you do not comply with the notice, you could face a fine of up to £500 or conviction.

Alternatively, an enforcer, such as a dog warden, may seize your dog, microchip it and register the details and then recover the cost from you.

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