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Knaresborough vet welcomes new law for compulsory microchipping of cats

Tower Vets Knaresborough is urging owners to have their cats microchipped to avoid the heartbreak of losing their pet forever – and a hefty fine.

Knaresborough vet welcomes new law for compulsory microchipping of cats A Knaresborough vet practice is urging owners to have their cats microchipped to avoid the heartbreak of losing their pet forever – and landing a hefty fine. From 10th June, it will be compulsory to have all cats over the age of 20 weeks microchipped, to make it easier for lost or stray pet cats to be reunited with their owners and returned home safely. Under the new Microchipping of Cats and Dogs (England) Regulations 2023, owners found not to have microchipped their cat will have 21 days to have one implanted or they may face a fine of up to £500. With the deadline looming, Tower Vets Knaresborough is holding a ‘cat chipping’ morning on Saturday 16th March, when owners will pay just £10. Owners must also ensure their cat’s microchip number is registered on a Government-approved pet microchip database and their contact details are stored and kept up to date. You can be fined up to £500 if your cat is registered on a database that is not on the Government’s approved list, and the same rule also applies to dogs. [caption id="attachment_101646" align="aligncenter" width="931"] Linda McNulty scanning for a cat's microchip at Tower Vets.[/caption] According to Cats Protection (2021), there are more than 10 million pet cats in England, with as many as 2.3 million unchipped, meaning it would be extremely difficult to reunite them with their owner if they were lost or stolen. The simple procedure involves inserting a small chip with a unique serial number under your cat’s skin. This number can be read by a scanner and checked against a microchip database to help reunite pets quicker with their registered keeper. Tower Vets, whose branch is in Wetherby Road, has welcomed the move and believes it will spare cat owners a lot of heartache and worry if their pet goes missing, as well as improve cat welfare with fewer strays abandoned on the streets. José Madrid Rodriguez, senior veterinary surgeon at Tower Vets, said:

“Cats are much-loved parts of our families and making sure that they’re microchipped is the best possible way to reunite them with you if they are ever lost, injured or stolen. “Losing a cat can be so distressing but, if they are chipped, then there is a better chance their owner can be traced, as long as they have kept their contact details up to date on an approved database."
José added:
"Owners who bring cats and kittens to us for microchipping can be assured we will only use a Government-approved database when registering their pet. “Microchips are safe, easy to implant and effective. Unlike collars and ID tags, they don’t come off and they don’t put your cat at risk of injury. "The easiest time to do this is when cats come in for neutering at 20 weeks, at the same time as they are anaesthetised, so we would encourage owners to discuss both options with their vet.”
Tower Vets is also holding a ‘cat chipping’ afternoon for pet owners in York at its branch on Fulford Road, on Saturday 23rd March, when the cost of microchipping will also be £10. The compulsory microchipping of dogs over eight weeks old came into force in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland in 2016. To view a list of Government-recommended pet databases, visit: Get your dog or cat microchipped - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) Read more local stories from Your Harrogate here.

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