Dogs Trust, the UK's largest dog welfare charity, has announced ambitious targets to offer free microchipping for all dogs with the help of its biggest award to date raised thanks to players of People's Postcode Lottery.
In advance of the start of compulsory microchipping for dogs across England in April 2016, Dogs Trust is offering free microchipping at its 20 rehoming centres for all dogs and through special chipping events taking place across the UK.
Since 1999, Dogs Trust has chipped over 700,000 dogs. Recent research shows that 1,870,000 dogs remain unchipped. With an estimated 8.9 million dogs in the UK and 24% of households now owning a dog, Dogs Trust hopes to be able to chip as many dogs as possible.
Dogs Trust CEO Adrian Burder says, "Stray dog numbers in the UK are unacceptably high, but we know that in the last year microchips have helped local authorities alone to reunite 10,084 dogs with their owners. We would urge all dog owners to take up our free chipping offer to help increase the likelihood of their dog being returned to them if they stray. If your dog is found without a microchip, or with incorrect contact details, they could be left open to an uncertain fate in a Council pound where kennel space and funding is stretched.
"The funding of £175,000 from players of People's Postcode Lottery will not only help to ensure that more dogs can benefit from free microchipping, but will also go towards the wider care of over 17,000 stray and abandoned dogs at Dogs Trust every year."
Head of Charities at People's Postcode Lottery Clara Govier says, "To date players of People's Postcode Lottery have raised over £56.1 Million for charities and good causes. Dogs Trust works at the heart of communities to advance the welfare of dogs through rehoming and wide reaching educational programmes, and we are delighted to be supporting their vital work across the country."
To find out about Dogs Trust's free chipping events, please visit www.chipmydog.org.uk for details.