Thousands of dogs and cats go missing each year in the UK and many are never reunited with their owners as they have no permanent identification. Microchipping is the safest way to ensure pets can be reunited with their owners as quickly as possible.
There are over 11 million pet cats in England, with at least 2.3 million without a microchip (GOV.UK) meaning that it would be very difficult to reunite them with their owner if they become lost or stolen. In 2021, we and other animal welfare charities collectively campaigned for a change in the law so that cats are required to be microchipped -this has been compulsory for dogs since 2016. In March this year, Parliament decided it will be the law for cats to be microchipped by the time they reach 20 weeks of age.
Getting your pet microchipped is a fairly quick and simple procedure. Vets will usually charge between £10 and £30 to do this.
The new law requiring cats to be microchipped comes into effect in June 2024
At Mayhew, we offer free microchipping at our community vet clinic for eligible pet owners.
We encourage all pet owners to get their cats microchipped ahead of the new law taking effect, please get in touch with us to find out how.
“We have been able to reunite seven cats and 37 dogs this last year thanks to them being microchipped. Sadly, of the 154 stray cats that came to Mayhew, 147 were either not chipped or had incorrect details. We welcome this legislation, as microchipping is a quick and safe way to ensure that pet owners can be reunited with their cats if they become lost. All animals that are adopted from Mayhew are neutered or spayed and chipped. We encourage all owners to get their pets chipped, not only for peace of mind but to comply with the law.”
Who needs to do this/Which cats need to be microchipped?
The new legislation applies to all pet cats – even indoor cats need to be microchipped.
Indoor cats can escape through open windows and doors that have been left open by mistake, especially in warm and hot weather. Unneutered males and female cats who are in season which are kept indoors can sometimes be very keen to escape to find a mate.
When an indoor cat escapes, they are at higher risk of becoming lost as they would be in unfamiliar surroundings.
There are many benefits to having your pet cat microchipped.
We often have stray cats brought to Mayhew and we try our best to trace their owners. If the cat has been microchipped, our team can access information about the cat and the owner’s contact details.
Microchipping is also a safer and more reliable method of identification than using collars which can sometimes fall off or become too tight and injure the cat with sometimes fatal consequences.
A microchip does not have an internal battery or power source so it will never wear out or become inactive. It will last for your pet’s entire lifetime but don’t forget to update your details if you move house or change your phone number. If your pet is already microchipped, you can check which database they are registered to on the Check a Chip website.
When do I need to microchip my cat?
Whilst there is no minimum age to have your cat microchipped, it must be microchipped by 20 weeks of age under the new legislation. It is important to get it done before your cat goes outside for the first time. Microchips can be implanted by vets, vet nurses and people who have been specially trained.
Find out how Mayhew can help with microchipping your cat, free of charge for eligible pet owners.
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