Only 1 in 5 Lost Dogs Have Up-To-Date Chips

Says Battersea Dogs & Cats Home

New research by Battersea has revealed only 1 in 5 lost dogs have any chance of being reunited with their owners after figures from Local Authorities showed the majority of dogs either don’t have microchips, or the chip is out of date.

The findings come just as the new compulsory microchipping law comes into power – all dogs in England, Scotland and Wales must now be chipped with up to date details.

Battersea Dogs & Cats Home collected data from 50 UK Local Authorities which took in 1,154 stray dogs in February 2016. Their Microchipping where it Matters Most report revealed that only 45% of those strays had a microchip and the owners contact details were out of date in more than half of these. 

Over 280 dogs had microchips with inaccurate details because:
•    25% were chipped to the wrong owner
•    31% of chips had an old address
•    38% of chips had an old phone number

Battersea’s Chief Executive Claire Horton said: “Battersea’s research reveals a very worrying picture of how few dogs in the UK are already microchipped and also that far too many of those chips have out of date details on them. We welcome the new microchipping law as it can really help in reuniting lost dogs with their owners. But there’s a long way to go to make sure the nation’s dog owners know they must get their dog chipped and keep their details up to date. 

“This important legislation can make a real difference to the welfare of all dogs, and dog owners are welcome to make an appointment at any Battersea centre to bring their dog in and get it chipped for free.”

We care for over 8,000 animals every year across our three sites in London, Berkshire and Kent and hope the new microchipping law will lead to many more reunites between dogs and their owners. We, and other animal welfare charities such as Dogs Trust and Blue Cross, are offering the free dog microchipping service at their centres.

The support given to us from the 50 UK Local Authorities, who checked whether the stray dogs coming into them throughout February were chipped or not and whether chips were up to date, was invaluable."

Lost dogs can be reunited with their owners in just a couple of hours after being brought to a rescue centre, their local vet or Local Authority, if they have a microchip. The chip is as small as a grain of rice and can instantly provide the contact details of the owner. Last year, Battersea reunited 542 lost pets with their owners.

View the full report.

If you have lost or found a cat or dog, please visit file a report or call Battersea's Lost Dogs & Cats Line as soon as possible on 020 7627 9245 - lines are open between 8am and 6pm seven days a week.

To help encourage those dog owners who haven’t yet got their dogs chipped, Battersea Dogs & Cats Home are currently offering free dog microchipping at their  three centres and microchipping events. To book an appointment at your nearest centre, please call 0843 509 4444.


April 12, 2016