The British Veterinary Association (BVA) has warmly welcomed the Welsh Government announcement that all dogs in Wales must be microchipped from 1 March 2015. The decision follows compulsory microchipping legislation coming into force in Northern Ireland last year and a Defra decision to introduce the policy in England from April 2016.
The BVA is a founding member of the Microchipping Alliance – a group of vets, welfare charities, and enforcement bodies campaigning for compulsory dog microchipping across the UK and chaired by the Dogs Trust.
Commenting, Peter Jones, BVA President, said:
“The BVA has been campaigning for compulsory microchipping of all dogs for many years and so we are delighted that the Welsh Government will bring in new legislation soon.
“Microchipping is a safe, effective and permanent way to link dogs to their owners and is an essential part of responsible ownership. It is a small cost in terms of dog ownership with veterinary practices offering to microchip at a very reasonable price or at a discount or free as part of practice promotion.
“We will continue to lobby the Scottish Government to ensure that the whole of the UK has compulsory microchipping in place.”
Bob Stevenson, President of BVA Welsh Branch, added:
“This is fantastic news for dog welfare in Wales. Microchipping provides veterinary practices, charities, and dog wardens with the ability to reunite lost and stray dogs quickly and safely with their owners.
“It is important to remember that microchips are only as useful as the information held on the database and so we must all work together with the Welsh Government to ensure that dog owners understand the importance of keeping their information up to date.”