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Owners braced for dog chip deadline

Tuesday March 8th 2016

Pet owners are being urged to ensure their dogs are microchipped with just weeks to go before the new law is introduced. Compulsory microchipping is due to arrive on April 6.

Failure to do so 21 days after a notice has been served will leave owners liable to a £500 fine. The same sum along the same timescale will be due if records are not updated.

The chipping applies to dogs reaching eight weeks of age, although they can be younger. Government officials say that owners have a much better chance of getting their pets returned under the new system.

Each year more than 102,000 dogs are either stolen recovered as strays from the streets. More than eight out of 10 owners already have their pooches chipped with their details stored on a country-wide database. The procedure is pain-free and will apply to the country's 8.5 million-strong canine population.

The chips should also make it easier to find owners of aggressive dogs that attack people. Ministers expect to make £33 million savings every year by taking away much of the burden from local charities and councils, which normally have to feed and house dogs.

Copyright Press Association 2016