20th February 2015
ICSA sheep chairman John Brooks has welcomed Minister Coveney’s announcement of arrangements for compulsory dog microchipping, which will be rolled out on a phased basis beginning with pups in September 2015 and expanding to all dogs in March 2016.
“ICSA has been calling for such compulsory microchipping for years and this will go a long way towards solving many of the current problems relating to Ireland’s dog population such as straying, abandonment, theft, livestock worrying, animal cruelty and dangerous dogs,” said Mr. Brooks.
“It should also encourage more responsible dog ownership. Just this week we saw a situation where eight dogs were shot in Clare, having attacked a flock of sheep. No farmer wants to come out to see several ewes ripped apart by marauding dogs. Apart from the sheep that die, there are knock on effects on other ewes in the flock. This is especially so when ewes are heavily in-lamb. An attack by dogs will typically lead to all kinds of knock on complications for the surviving ewes.”
“Apart from the pain and stress inflicted on the animals, such attacks represent serious distress and financial loss to the farmers involved, and compulsory microchipping should help to prevent many of these attacks.”
Mr. Brooks also warned that microchipping alone won’t solve the problems. “Follow-up is vital, and I’m glad to see the mention of a database, but we’d like more detail on how the regulations are going to be applied and also what the sanctions will be for those who don’t comply.”