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THE Government intends to introduce a ‘practical and balanced’ package of measures to encourage responsible dog ownership and support local communities in England, according to Owen Paterson, the Secretary of State at Defra.
Among the measures set out in a written ministerial statement by Mr Paterson on February 6, are plans to require all dogs in England to be microchipped. Referring to last year's consultation on possible measures to encourage responsible ownership and deal with the consequences of irresponsible ownership (VR, April 28, 2012, vol 170, pp 425-426), he reported that there had been ‘overwhelming support’ from 96 per cent of respondents for some form of compulsory microchipping, but that only 10 per cent had supported a proposal to microchip puppies. ‘The 10- to 12-year delay before all dogs would be microchipped is considered too long to wait to get the benefits and the police and others did not feel it was practical,’ Mr Paterson said. The Government therefore proposed to introduce regulations in England making it compulsory for owners to have their dog microchipped and registered on one of the authorised commercial databases from April 6, 2016. Owners would also have to register the details of any …
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