‘Dogs must be microchipped’

A LEADING animal welfare charity is urging local dog owners to take heed of new legislation which came into effect on April 9.

Dogs Trust has welcomed the introduction of compulsory microchipping across Northern Ireland, and is reminding owners that they must get their dogs microchipped - a quick and virtually painless procedure involving a tiny computer chip containing the dog’s medical history and owner details being injected under the animal’s skin.

Since May 2011, Dogs Trust has run hundreds of microchipping roadshows, trained members of staff at Jollyes pet food superstores on how to microchip and worked closely with numerous veterinary practices and local authorities across Northern Ireland.

Ronnie Milsop, the Trust’s Campaigns Manager, said: “The legislation represents a significant step forward for dog welfare and responsible dog ownership and we have been delighted that over 67,000 dog owners in Northern Ireland have taken advantage of our offer of a free microchip.

“Whilst the changes will take immediate effect we will continue to be touring the country with our chipping van offering free chips for dogs of all shapes and sizes.”

For details about free microchipping services log on to www.dogstrust.org.uk or visit Jollyes pet food superstore in Glengormley.

Information about the new legislation affecting dog owners can be found online at www.newtownabbey.gov.uk/dogs