Free Dog Microchipping

A dog should have a collar and ID tag in a public place, as this is a legal requirement.

It will also be a legal requirement for all dogs in England to be microchipped by 6 April 2016.

Microchipping your dog gives them the best chance of being identified and returned to you, if they become lost or stolen, especially if your dog escapes without its collar or loses its collar. Most vet surgeries, rescue centres and Councils have microchip scanners, so if your dog has been microchipped it can be traced to you.


Free microchipping for dogs of Harlow residents

Harlow Council, will be able to microchip your dog for free provided that you meet the following terms and conditions:

  1. The dog is your pet and is not part of a dog breeding business.
  2. The owner is a resident of Harlow.
  3. The owner will assist the warden by holding the dog during the process.


The offer of free microchipping by Harlow Council is at the Council’s discretion and subject to availability.

Request a free microchipping appointment

To request an appointment you will need to either:

Please return the completed form to Contact Harlow. Once we have received the completed form for the microchipping service, we will contact you to arrange an appointment to visit you at home and microchip your dog.

The microchipping process

The Dog Warden will visit your home to insert a tiny microchip under your dog’s skin, whilst you hold your dog. This gives the dog their own unique code which can be scanned and matched to your contact details, which are kept on a database.

Important – Microchipping is only effective if you keep your details up to date. If you move house or change your telephone number you must make sure that you tell the database you are registered with.

RSPCA logo silver footprint award - stray dog 2015Microchipping – Frequently asked questions

Why should I get my dog microchipped?

Stray dogs can sometimes be a problem in Harlow and we would like to reduce the number that we collect. A dog that is loose or escapes into a public place and is not under close supervision can sometimes be perceived as a menace. A stray dog will foul, can be aggressive and in some circumstances may attack other dogs or animals or in the worst case attack people. Microchipping your dog will not stop your dog straying, however it will greatly improve the chances that your dog and you will be reunited.

Why should I bother having my dog microchipped?

For added security, safety and peace of mind should your dog escape without its collar or loses its collar, a microchip will enable your dog to be identified to you.

Will my dog find the microchipping procedure painful? 

The microchip is a very small electronic device, about the size of a grain of rice. It is inserted painlessly just under the skin of the dog, at the scruff of the neck.

Is it the law that I identify my dog?

Yes, all dog owners have a legal obligation under the Control of Dogs Act 1992 to provide their pet with a collar and ID tag that identifies the owner’s name and address, when in a public place. A collar and tag is still a requirement, even if your dog is microchipped. A telephone number is optional (but strongly advisable). An owner can be fined up to £5,000 if the dog is not wearing identification. Dogs exempt from wearing a collar and ID tag in public include: dogs on official duty for the armed forces, HM Customs and Excise or police; sport dogs and packs of hounds; dogs used for capturing or destroying vermin; dogs used for driving/tending cattle or sheep; guide dogs for the blind; and dogs used for emergency rescue work.

It will also be a legal requirement for all dogs in England to be microchipped by 6 April 2016.

How can I get my dog Microchipped?

Harlow Council offers a microchip service or alternatively The Dogs Trust, the RSPCA or your local vet may microchip your dog for you.


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