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Pet Microchipping

The Stolen and Missing Pets Alliance (Sampa) started campaigning for pet microchipping reform in 2014 , and Pet Theft Reform joined in 2018 calling for a single, centralised microchip database to be created, accessible by police, vets, authorities and rescues to provide quick unifications and to support criminal investigations. We are also working with wider campaigns such as  Fern’s Law to make better use of pet microchips to help protect our pets (#MakeChipsCount).

Microchip Myth-Busting

  • Your microchip is the only way of linking your pet to you, if your details aren't correct, your pet may never make it home.

  • Your vet does NOT update your details, it is the owner's responsibility.

  • You can choose which register your data is stored on, and you should not have to pay to update your details. 

  • If your pet is not registered on one of the Defra approved registers (check list here) then they are not safe, switch their data now!

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"As always, with any proposed new legislation, the devil is in the detail and personally I would have preferred to have also seen the inclusion of compulsory microchip scanning at a pet’s first veterinary visit, as I believe it would act as an extra deterrent to thieves at no extra cost, and of course help reunite stolen pets with their worried families.  I look forward to this legislation appearing on the statute book to help protect pets and their owners, right across the country.Dr Marc Abraham OBE



Pet microchips can play a crucial role in identifying and reuniting pets with their owners but currently there is no legal requirement for vets, police or local authorities to scan a found cat or dog.

With 22 different Defra compliant pet microchip databases in the UK - and many more non-compliant databases - we must create a single point of access so this information is more easily accessible to authorities. 


Simplifying the process with a central database will help authorities reunite more missing and stolen pets with families. 

Microchip Details

Find out how to keep your pet's microchip details safe


Fern's Law

Fern’s Law is a separate campaign which seeks to make microchip scanning compulsory upon first presentation at a vet surgery and/or during a pet’s annual check-up. While microchipping has been compulsory for dogs since 2016, it is not currently a legal requirement for vets, local authorities or highways agencies to scan a dog or cat in any circumstances.


About Fern

April 2013, Fern, a cocker-springer spaniel, was stolen from her home and wasn’t reunited with her family until 2019. During the six years away from her loving owners, Fern was used for breeding resulting in poor health. Fern was taken to the vet during that time but, as scanning is not compulsory, the truth of her situation was never identified. It wasn’t until Fern was abandoned and a kind soul took her to another vet that she was finally reunited with her family.

We need your help to make real change. 

"Pet Theft Reform is about family. With victims at the heart of the campaign, we recognise the importance of the human-animal bond, the devastating impact that animal abduction has on people and pets, and the need for pet abduction as a specific offence. Through evidence-based campaigning and collaboration, this cruel crime will be taken seriously."  - Dr. Daniel Allen


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