Cat microchip law: Martin Lewis urges microchipping action to avoid £500 fine under new rule

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The regulation, already in place for dogs since 2016, aims to enhance pet safety

Cat owners in England are being warned by Martin Lewis to take action before June or face a £500 fine. The finance expert highlighted the urgency of his advice in his latest Money Saving Expert newsletter.

Starting on Monday 10 June, it will be a legal requirement in England for all cats aged 20 weeks and older to be microchipped and registered on a database.

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This regulation, already in place for dogs since 2016, aims to enhance pet safety and reunite lost animals with their owners. But statistics show that over 20% of cats remain unchipped.

With over nine million pet cats in England, of which approximately 2.3 million are unchipped, there's a significant risk of losing track of these animals if they become stray or are stolen.

Environment Secretary Thérèse Coffey emphasised the importance of this measure, acknowledging cats' status as beloved family members and the distress caused when they go missing.

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“Legislating for compulsory microchipping of cats will give comfort to families by increasing the likelihood that lost or stray pets can be reunited with their owners,” she said.

Chief Veterinary Officer Christine Middlemiss said: “I am pleased that we are progressing with our requirement for all cats to be microchipped.

“Microchipping is by far the most effective and quickest way of identifying lost pets. As we’ve seen with dog microchipping, those who are microchipped are more than twice as likely to be reunited with their owner.

“By getting their cat microchipped, owners can increase the likelihood that they will be reunited with their beloved pet in the event of it going missing.”

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Madison Rogers, Head of Advocacy, Campaigns & Government Relations at Cats Protection, said: “Cats Protection is delighted that pet cats in England will be given the same protection as dogs when it comes to microchipping

“ The charity regularly reunites owners with their much-loved cats, and in most cases this is only possible thanks to microchips.

“No matter how far from home they are found, or how long they have been missing, if a cat has a microchip there is a good chance that a lost cat will be swiftly returned home.”

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