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Southland District Council is reminding dog owners to microchip their dogs after it has had to send out 50 infringement notices to dog owners throughout the district who have failed to do so, despite the written requests they have received. Council has been left with no alternative but to issue the fine of $300 to each of the dog owners in breach of Section 36A of the Dog Control Act 1996 which states that a microchip transponder must be implanted in certain dogs.
Dogs that must be microchipped include dogs that are classified as menacing, dangerous or were registered for the first time after 1 July 2006. Working dogs are exempt from being microchipped and their owners may obtain a working dog declaration from Council to prove this.
Animal control officer Paul Bell said the dog owners have been given every chance to microchip their dogs and have received notices from Council to warn them about the financial penalty.
"Council offers a free microchipping service that is available throughout the District in order to make it as easy as possible for owners to comply with the legislation," Mr Bell said.
"The issuing of infringements notices will be on-going to make sure that all dog owners microchip their dogs."
If a dog is lost, stolen or has strayed, a microchip will enable the dog to be easily identified when found.
"We encourage all responsible dog owners to microchip their dogs as early as possible," Mr Bell said.