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A short guide to proper dog identification

For many dog owners their canine friend is a member of the family, so can find be very distressing if or when a pet goes missing. Owners can go some way to protecting their pooches by fitting dog collars and leads which can be used to store identification details using various attachable devices.

What many owners do not realise is that the law requires their dog to be fitted with proper identification when they are in a public place due to The Control of Dogs Order 1992. Contravening this law can result in dog owners being issued with a fine. Fit your pet with identification correctly by making sure they have your name and address either etched on a tag attached to their collar, or slipped inside one of the tiny containers you can purchase to attach somewhere on the band. You can also provide your telephone number as part of this information should you wish, however this is optional.

Of course, it is possible for dogs to lose the tags off their collar, or even to lose both their collar and the ID on it. This is why micro chipping has become a more popular choice with dog owners in recent years. The process which is carried out by a vet involves slipping a microchip or small electronic implant just under the surface of the dogís skin. This chip corresponds with an identification number which can be used to track your details as dog owner as stored on a national database. This means that if your dog is found by someone else it can be tracked back to your home. Because police or animal protection officers will use the information stored on the national database to locate you, it is incredibly important to make sure this data stays up to date. If you move house you should always amend your details Ė particularly as this is a common time for pets to go missing. If your dog has another owner in the future you should also make sure the petís record is updated to reflect their new ownership.

Although micro chipping is not required by law and you will still be required to fit your dog with ID on their collar, you may find there are additional benefits to your pet undergoing the procedure as many insurers now offer a discount for pets who have electronic implants.

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