After 6th April 2016 it became compulsory for all dog owners in England, Scotland and Wales to have their dog microchipped and registered with a government compliant microchip database. It is now the law that all puppies must be microchipped and their details recorded on a microchip database by the time they are 8 weeks old. Therefore, breeders are now responsible for microchipping puppies and must be recorded as the fist keeper.
Owner's contact details must also be kept up to date to ensure compliance with the law. If you are found to be the keeper of an unchipped dog (by local authority, law enforcement etc.) you will be given 21 days to comply and failure to do so may result in a £500 fine. It is still a legal requirement that all dogs wear an ID tag with the name and address of the owner clearly displayed.
Although it is now a legal requirement the importance of microchipping your dog goes well beyond that. It is estimated that 5 dogs are reported missing very day in the UK* (and the actual figure is likely to be much higher). Approximately 13% of dog owners who reported their dogs missing were reunited with their pet because it had a microchip. If a stray/lost dog is found it is likely to end up at a veterinary clinic or animal shelter where it will automatically be scanned for an ID chip and the database checked for the registered keeper details.
Since the law came into force it is still estimated that 1 in 5 dogs are not microchipped despite it being compulsory by law and an effective way of finding a missing dog.
As a practice we now use the 'Back Home mini chip' as standard which offers more effortless implantation by fully-trained vets and nurses. The chip is inserted using a needle under the skin on the neck and the majority of animals will barely feel it taking place. For the cost of £14.99 you are providing peace of mind that you are more likely to be reunited with your pet if they are lost and potentially avoiding a £500 fine.
*Data provided by More Than pet insurance.