Our puppy has an identification disc on her collar. Does she need this, or should we just get her microchipped? What are the rules?
Answer (November 2015)
Under the Control of Dogs Acts 1986 and 1992, dogs must at all times wear a collar with the name and address of the owner inscribed on it or on a plate, badge or disc, so you are right to have an identification disc on your puppy’s collar. However, you must also get her microchipped and registered on an authorised database under the Microchipping of Dogs Regulations 2015.
Since September 2015, all newborn pups must be microchipped and registered. From 31 March 2016, the Regulations will apply to all dogs. Even if a dog has already been microchipped (for a pet passport, for instance) it will now have to be registered on an authorised database as well.
The microchip can only be implanted by a vet, a veterinary nurse or a person who has been trained by one of the authorised databases. The microchip contains a unique 15-digit number. When you register with an authorised database, this number will be recorded on it along with your name and address details. This means that, if your dog goes missing and is found, you can be identified as the owner and be reunited with your dog.
If you move house, you will need to update your contact details on the database. If you plan to buy a new dog, the seller will have to give you its certificate of registration and you should forward it to the relevant database to get the details updated.
The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has published a list of authorised databases, along with a set of Frequently Asked Questions on agriculture.gov.ie.
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