One in ten dog owners in Scotland are breaking the law by failing to have their pet microchipped, researchers have found.
A year on from the introduction of compulsory microchipping in Scotland, a study by the Pet Food Manufacturing Association found 90% of dogs were fitted with the device.
Microchips contain a unique identification number and must be registered on a database along with the owner’s contact details to help reunite dogs with their owners if the pet is lost or stolen.
Legally, dogs must have the implant fitted by eight weeks old and owners who fail to comply face a fine of up to £500.
The Dogs Trust charity is urging owners in Scotland to microchip their pet if they have not already done so and to keep their details up to date.
The charity said 243 (13%) of the 1,843 stray and abandoned dogs that remained unclaimed in local authority kennels in Scotland last year could not be reunited with their owners through lack of up-to-date microchip details.
Alex Jackson, head of campaigns at Dogs Trust, said: “Whilst we will continue to work hard to make sure the remaining 10% of dog owners in Scotland get their dog chipped, we are pleased that the law is working well across the UK, with 95% of the nation’s dogs now chipped.
“It’s essential that in addition to getting their dogs microchipped, the details on the database are up-to-date, to ensure they have the best possible chance of being reunited with their pet should they become lost.
“It’s also a legal requirement for dogs to wear a collar and tag displaying the owner’s name and address when out in public.”