Image demonstrating Dog owners urged to microchip pets following prosecution

Dog owners urged to microchip pets following prosecution

Dog owners are being reminded that it is a legal requirement to microchip their dogs and ensure the details stored on the microchip are up to date. Failure to do so could lead to a prosecution and fine. 
The reminder follows a recent prosecution by Northumberland County Council’s Animal Welfare Team. 

Stephen Shepherd, of North Ridge, Bedlington has been fined for failing to update his pet’s ownership details despite being requested to do so after his dog was found roaming the streets in October last year. 

The stray dog was handed into Vets 4 Pets, Ridge Farm, Bedlington and although it was microchipped the information on the database was out of date and the dog was registered to a previous keeper. 

Stephen Shepherd, the dog’s new owner made contact and the Animal Welfare Officer returned the dog to Shepherd’s home address later that day. 

He was subsequently served with a notice to update the microchip details within 21 days which he failed to do – in breach of the Microchipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015. 

The Court imposed a fine of £220, awarded legal costs of £100 and a victim surcharge of £88. 

Microchipping is in place to enable identification of a dog and helps authorities reunite stray pets with their owners. Updated microchips also act as a deterrent to dog theft and give vets and officials the ability to easily contact an owner in an emergency.  

For microchip the data to be useful, the details recorded must be up to date. Therefore, owners who move house, or even change their mobile telephone number should remember to ensure their dog’s microchip details are updated. 
Incorrect or out-of-date information means that your dog is not legally considered as microchipped. 

Northumberland County Councillor Colin Horncastle, cabinet member for community services said: “Our Animal Welfare Team work hard to keep unsupervised animals off the street as stray animals can pose a danger to themselves and to others.  

“When a dog goes missing it can be distressing for both the dog and their owner. Having your pet microchipped is quick and painless for them and increases the chances of you being reunited with your dog if they go missing."  
You can get your dog microchipped by contacting your local vet, or the county council. 
Anyone who is facing difficulty in microchipping their dogs or needs further advice, is advised to contact the council on 0345 600 6400. 
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