Test Valley Borough Council is offering residents the opportunity to microchip their dogs to prepare for a new law which will come into force on 6 April 2016.
The authority’s Animal Welfare Officer is offering a free microchipping service which will mean that dog owners can be contacted quickly and easily should their pet stray. The microchipping can be carried out at home or at another suitable location.
Housing and Environmental Health Portfolio Holder, Councillor Sandra Hawke, said: “I urge dog owners to contact the Council and make use of this free service if their pet hasn’t already been microchipped. Our Animal Welfare Officer investigates a large number of situations where dogs have been separated from their owners and it is surprising how many of the dogs have not been microchipped. This means that finding the animal’s owner can be incredibly difficult. Microchipping is carried out quickly, it does not cause any harm to the animal and it will prove vital when reuniting dogs with their owners should they become lost or stolen.”
The microchip is a similar size to a grain of rice and is implanted under the dog’s skin between the shoulder blades. Once complete, the owner’s contact details are stored on a secure database alongside a unique 15 digit code. Vets and other trained animal professionals will be able to identify the code using an electronic scanning device should they need to get in touch with the owner.