Dog Microchipping


Multiple pieces of legislation apply to dog owners in Northern Ireland. This guide will help you understand your responsibilities, but it is not to be considered legal advice. The information below applies to Northern Ireland only. The rules may be different in the Republic of Ireland, England, Wales, and Scotland.

Dog Microchipping:

All dogs over the age of 8 weeks old must be microchipped.

You are responsible for ensuring that the contact details held against your dog’s microchip number are accurate. If the details are not accurate, the dog licence you hold regarding that dog will not be valid. You  have a duty to ensure that you details are kept up to date by notifying the microchip company of any changes – e.g. in address or telephone number.

Very occasionally a vet may advise against microchipping on health grounds. If this is the case, they will need to issue the owner or breeder with an exemption certificate.

What happens if I break the law?

If your dog is not microchipped, you will not be able to obtain  a dog licence and you will be guilty of an offence.

The law:

The Dogs (Northern Ireland) Order 1983, article 6 (7), as amended by the Dogs (Licensing and Identification) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012.

The Dogs (Licensing and Identification) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2014.