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Marking the second anniversary of compulsory microchipping in the UK, new research showed that council fines for failing to chip your dog vary by up to five times as much as in other areas.

The investigation carried out by Pets At Home revealed that UK councils have fined 103 dog owners £18,802, with some fines as high as almost £2,000.

The Freedom of Information requests were submitted by the pet supplies company to every city, county, district and borough council to see which councils were fining the most owners. The responses showed that London Borough of Hounslow had fined one owner £1,932.50. This is compared to 34 dog owners who were fined an average of £25 each by the Isle of Wight Council. 

Despite making it easier to find your dog should they be stolen or go missing, estimates suggest one in eight dog owners still hasn’t microchipped their four-legged friend, meaning hundreds of thousands of animal lovers could face hefty fines.

Dr Maeve Moorcroft, head of pets at Pets at Home, said, “The results of our Freedom of Information requests are somewhat surprising; and what we found most of note was how much the fines charged by councils varied across the country.

“Microchipping is a simple and cheap procedure that doesn’t hurt a dog in any way and it’s vital that responsible pet owners obey this law. We’d urge dog owners to take steps to get their canine microchipped, firstly for the health and safety of their four-legged friend, and secondly to comply with the law and avoid potentially hefty fines.”

The Isle of Wight Council had fined the most owners, which was followed by Coventry City Council with 19 and Sheffield City council with 12 who have both prosecuted all of those who have been fined. In total, 75 dog owners in the UK have been prosecuted by their local council.

Council name

Number of dog owners fined

Average amount each owner was fined

Number of dog owners who have been prosecuted

Isle of Wight Council

34

£25

0

Coventry City Council

19

£159

19

Sheffield City Council

12

£148.75

12

East Riding of Yorkshire Council

7

£312

7

Hull City Council

6

£447

6

Northumberland County Council

6

£247

6

Blaby District Council

3

£268

6

Plymouth City Council

3

£416

5

Birmingham City Council

2

£130

3

Hertsmere Borough Council

2

£150

2

London Borough of Brent

2

£312

2

Preston City Council

2

£345

2

South Tyneside Metropolitan Borough Council

2

£90

2

Durham County Council

1

£564.56

1

London Borough of Hounslow

1

£1,932.50

1

Manchester City Council

1

£180

1

 

Microchipping must be carried out by a trained professional but this can take place at your vet’s or at a microchipping event sometimes held by charities. Pets at Home also offer microchipping and you can find out more information at your nearest store. Ensure that once your dog is microchipped that their details are kept up to date on your microchip database.

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