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Chip and Tag Your Pet

By: Elaine Everest - Updated: 28 Jun 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Stolen Dog Microchip Tag Lost Tattoo

It is a common occurrence to hear of dogs being lost or stolen. This can be traumatic for the family and can put the dog in great harm. There are a few easy steps that may not stop your dog being taken or lost but will aid his safe return.

Collar and tag

It is a legal requirement under the Control of Dogs Act 1992 that every dog when in a public place must be wearing a collar with the details of his owner inscribed wither on the collar or attached on a tag. Failure to do so means that the owner could be liable to prosecution and a fine of up to £2,000.

Wording

Be careful what words you heave inscribed on the tag. By showing your address it may alert unscrupulous people to the fact that your home is empty while you are out walking the dog. A telephone number is sensible and if your dogged has been micro chipped add the words, ‘Scan my chip.’ Dogs are often stolen then used for breeding before being discarded when they are no longer needed. If your dog is neutered why not add the words, ‘I am neutered.’ Although many people do add their pet’s name to the tag it can be debatable as to whether this is a good idea. If it comes to proving ownership it is best if the person who took your dog does not know its given name. Instead add the owners family name.

Micro Chipping

Micro chipping is done by inserting a small chip the size of a grain of rice under the skin of the dog in the area of his shoulder. This microchip has a unique number that matches information of the dog’s official owner. If a dog needs to be identified a small hand held scanner is moved over the dog and the details are shown on the scanner. Veterinary surgeries, police and rescues centres should always scan a dog if there is doubt to its ownership or it has been handed in as lost.

Where to Get a Dog Chipped

Veterinary surgeons will microchip a dog and advertisements can be found in canine publications for reputable people who carry put this service. Sometimes there will be special micro chipping days organised by canine charities where free chipping is available for those owners who are not able to pay for their dog to be chipped. Those owners belonging to dog clubs may also find that there will be a person who attend club events and can offer an on the spot service.

Other Forms of Identification

It is not a legal requirement to microchip a dog but this form of identification is becoming more popular. Tattoos are also a recognised form of identification and owner’s information is stored in the same way as the microchip service. Dogs are most commonly tattooed inside their ear.

Updating Records

Always remember that if you move home your details should be updated with the holder of your microchip or tattoo records. Too often a dog’s reunion is delayed because the owner has moved house.

A Final Tip

Keep a record of your dog’s identity records along with updated photographs. Show a full body view from both sides, a head study and any unusual markings. This may aid his recovery if he is stolen or lost.

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Jessielittlejess - Your Question:
My neighbours are a sheltered accommodation for elderly people, they keep taking my cat. They take him into their flats and feed him. He hasn't been home for over two weeks now. I always put food out for him night and day but he hasn't been back for two weeks. Last year an elderly lady in the same home kept feeding him and he became feral. He wouldn't come home. I managed to catch him and take him to our vets, he had a terrible skin infection (mange) and a serious stomach problem as the lady had fed him on sardines in tomato sauce (the tomato made him very ill over time) I'm so worried that this will happen again. The residents have told me that if he was happy with me he wouldn't go to them. The thing I'm really worried about (as well as missing my cat) is the with various residents feeding him and having him in their flats, nobody is responsible for him and if something happens to him nobody will know or take him to his vets. What can I do?

Our Response:
I am sorry to hear this. It is often the case with cats, they choose where they wish to be and they can choose this for several reason. Some cats do not like children, some do not like living with other animals, some do not like loud noise, all of which can contribute to your pet wanting to up and leave. I had the same problem with my cat who would go a few doors away because the elderly lady (who was disabled) had a warm lap and a warm house (as I was out at work). The good thing about these neighbours is that they refused to feed her, because they lost their own beloved cat this way. My other cat refused to move house with me, when I moved down the road. I had to leave him as he saw this as his territory and no amount of me bringing him back would make him stay. The only option I can suggest is perhaps sending a nice letter to the people who are feeding your cat explaining why your cat shouldn't be fed by them. People, often out of misplaced kindness are sometimes unaware of the damage and upset they can do. If you say, it is lovely that you are caring for my cat and I welcome that he spends time with you, but please don't feed him because he needs a proper home and someone who will pay for his care if he gets ill. It's very sad, but part of the lives of cats who are very fickle when it suits.
SaferPets - 29-Jun-17 @ 1:01 PM
My neighbours are a sheltered accommodation for elderly people, they keep taking my cat. They take him into their flats and feed him. He hasn't been home for over two weeks now. I always put food out for him night and day but he hasn't been back for two weeks. Last year an elderly lady in the same home kept feeding him and he became feral. He wouldn't come home. I managed to catch him and take him to our vets, he had a terrible skin infection (mange) and a serious stomach problem as the lady had fed him on sardines in tomato sauce (the tomato made him very ill over time) I'm so worried that this will happen again. The residents have told me that if he was happy with me he wouldn't go to them. The thing I'm really worried about (as well as missing my cat) is the with various residents feeding him and having him in their flats, nobody is responsible for him and if something happens to him nobody will know or take him to his vets. What can I do?
Jessielittlejess - 27-Jun-17 @ 8:08 PM
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