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JoAnna Lou
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Mandatory Microchips
All British dogs must be microchipped by 2016

I’m a huge fan of microchipping. Identification tags fall off, collars get snagged, and unfortunately bad people steal pets. A microchip, typically implanted between a dog’s shoulder blades, can help dogs find their way back home. I’m a proponent of microchip education and low cost clinics, but I wasn’t initially sure how I felt about a microchip law.

Earlier this month, Britain announced that all dogs in England must be microchipped by 2016. The Environment Department is hoping that the requirement will be a simple solution for reuniting more lost or stolen pets with their families, promoting animal welfare, and taking the pressure off animal shelters. In the past, Britain has also proposed mandatory microchips to help in prosecuting dog bite cases.

According to the Environment Department, 60 percent of Britain’s 8 million dogs are already microchipped. Closing the gap would put England in good company with countries like Portugal, Italy, and Switzerland who already require microchips. Interestingly horses have had to be microchipped in England since 2009. After 2016, dogs without a microchip would face a hefty fine of up to 500 pounds (about $800).

I think this law is generally a good idea because it will increase awareness about microchiping. But given that the process involves injecting a foreign body into our pups, it seems better to keep the process optional.

What do you think about mandatory microchipping?

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JoAnna Lou is a New York City-based researcher, writer and agility enthusiast.

Photo by thekennelclub/flickr.

CommentsPost a Comment
Please note comments are moderated. After being approved your comment will appear below.
Submitted by Maddy and Jack's Mom | February 13 2013 |

Since I suffer from an auto-immune disease, I have to admit that I have always been leery of having my dogs microchipped. It seems to me to be asking for trouble.

My veterinarian and his staff was surprised when I, who they know as a very hands-on dog mom, told them I didn't want to have my new collie puppy microchipped when he was neutered. Knowing that I would have anything implanted in me, I feel strongly that I owe my dogs' health the same consideration.

Submitted by roger debman | February 21 2013 |

i am for microchipping and getting guide dogs the protection they deserve from the law hi as promised in the park the link to my petition to get guide dogs the protection they need . you will be horrified with the attacks on the petition http://www.causes.com/actions/1705258-protect-guide-dogs-for-the-blind

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