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Create a single database of microchipped cats and dogs & make scanning mandatory

Submitted by Debbie Matthews, Dr Daniel Allen and Beverley Cuddy on Thursday 17th September 2020

Published on Monday 12th October 2020

Current status: Open

Open until: Monday 12th April 2021

Current Signatures: 13,534
(count is updated approximately hourly)

Relevant Departments

Tagged with

Chips ~ Government ~ It ~ Major ~ search ~ The Government ~ Trade

Petition Action

Create a single database of microchipped cats and dogs & make scanning mandatory

Petition Details

There are two major flaws with the current compulsory microchipping system: optional scanning & the lack of a single database. There are 13 microchip databases on the government list, independent commercial enterprises, different processes & no interest in creating a central standardised register!

Additional Information

To confuse matters further, microchipping databases which do not meet government standards continue to trade, and often rank highly on search engines. If you register on an unlisted database, not only can you be fined £500 but your pet’s microchip will read as unregistered when scanned.

The Government should introduce a single database of microchipped cats and dogs, and make it compulsory for chips to be checked at 1st veterinary appointment.


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Government Response

The Government responded to this petition on Wednesday 13th January 2021

The Government has launched a consultation on compulsory microchipping and scanning of cats and dogs and is also reviewing the dog microchipping regulations, including how databases function.

The Government is aware that some people and organisations would like to see changes to the dog and cat microchipping legislation, including a single pet microchip database and a requirement for veterinarians to check the keeper records linked to microchips when pets are first brought into their practices. The Government is responding by reviewing existing microchipping regulations and by consulting interested parties to hear their views on these two suggestions.

As part of the post-legislative requirements, the Government is reviewing The Microchipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015 (the 2015 Regulations). This review is currently being undertaken by researchers from the University of Nottingham who are due to report their findings very shortly.

The study includes the use of multiple databases and whether there should be a single database.

Once the researchers have submitted their findings and we have had time to study it in full, the Government will wish to consult widely to gain people’s views and opinions on potential changes. There are currently fourteen separate databases which we regard as compliant with the 2015 Regulations. These are connected to facilitate the swift matching of microchip details with keeper contact information. If anyone wishes to find out which database a specific microchip is registered on they need only enter the individual microchip number on a single compliant databases’ look-up facilities. These look-up facilities are readily found on their websites. The search result will indicate which database the microchip is registered on, showing the enquirer where to find the relevant contact details regardless of which initial look-up facility is being used.

The Government is aware that there are databases which are not compliant with the 2015 Regulations and therefore should not be used by owners to register their dogs. We have been working with Trading Standards as well as a leading internet search facility to explore how to combat the issue of non-compliant databases. A list of compliant databases can be found on the Government’s website, here:
https://www.gov.uk/get-your-dog-microchipped

On 23 December 2020, the Government launched a public consultation on compulsory microchipping and scanning of cats and dogs. Among the questions being posed, the Government is asking whether veterinarians should be required to scan cats and dogs upon first presentation.

The consultation on compulsory microchipping and scanning of cats and dogs is due to close on 17 February 2021. Anyone who wishes to express their views about the suggestions raised by this petition, or on any other aspect of microchipping, they should go to the consultation which can be found here via the Government website:
https://consult.defra.gov.uk/companion-animals-team/cat-and-dog-microchipping-and-scanning-in-england/

It is anticipated that a public consultation on the 2015 Regulations will take place later this year.

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

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