Half of borough’s dogs are ‘chipped’

UP to half of the total number of dogs in the Larne borough have now been micro chipped, new statistics have revealed.

Legislation to be introduced on Easter Monday means local council’s will be unable to issue or renew a dog licence unless the animal has been electronically tagged.

And in a bid to help prepare residents for the change in the law, Larne council arranged for free micro chipping sessions to be held in conjunction with the Dogs Trust. This micro chipping roadshow visited locations across the borough in December, and again over a two-week period between February 20 and March 2.

In total, almost 1,200 dogs were micro chipped during the scheme, and the council believes that between 40 - 50 per cent of dogs in the borough have now been tagged, either by the Dogs trust, local veterinary practices or through a monthly service run by the council’s environmental warden.

The penalty for owning an unlicensed dog is an £80 fixed penalty, or a fine of up to £1,000 if the case is taken to court. A micro chip is only required once in the dog’s life and, as long as the details are kept up to date, the owner can always be traced should a dog go missing and be found by council staff or brought into kennels by a member of the public.