Lost dogs break hearts and cost hundreds

Published Thursday, 28 April 2016

Anyone who has lost their dog will know the worry it can cause, but did you know that lost dogs also carry a hefty financial cost?

With a simple microchip, you can make it easier and cheaper to have your pooch returned to you safely. If a dog is lost or gets stolen and is picked up by a council or a dog shelter, the microchip can be scanned and matched to contact details stored on a database making it much easier to reunite pooch with owner.

On 6 April 2016, it became law to have your dog microchipped; not doing this could land you a £500 fine.

In March, East Northamptonshire Council (ENC) offered free microchipping to any dogs that took part in their ‘5000 Paws’ dog walking challenge. With help from Wood Green, The Animals Charity, 32 dogs and their owners completed the challenge at Stanwick Lakes and Barnwell Country Park with the dogs being microchipped there and then.

ENC’s Green Dog Club also welcomed 43 new members whose details are stored to help reunite stray dogs with their owners more quickly.

Environmental services manager, Charlotte Tompkins, said: “We urge all dog owners to get their dog microchipped for their own peace of mind and to save larger costs picked up by ENC. 

“Each stray dog found in East Northants costs us £250. We can spend many hours recovering a stray and taking it to kennels. If a dog is not claimed within the week, ENC pays for all the kennelling costs as well so potentially each stray could cost nearly £400!”

Carla Leete, Community Engagement Officer at Wood Green, The Animals Charity, added: “Each year, Wood Green sees around 450 stray dogs. On average, less than 40% are microchipped and over half do not make it home to their owners! Why take that risk with your beloved pet?”

Dog owners are also reminded to keep microchip details up to date. If you move address or change telephone number, please inform your chip provider. Incorrect contact details make reuniting lost dogs very tricky and expensive.

If you lose or find a dog in East Northamptonshire, report it to 01832 742000 during office hours or 01832 733530 outside of office hours.

Visit the Green Dog Club page.

Visit the dog warden service page.