Hertfordshire cat-owners warned deadline for new micro-chipping law is fast approaching

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Cat owners in Hertfordshire whose felines are not micro-chipped are being warned they could face a fine when a new law comes into force next week.

The law that all cats in England must be microchipped and registered on a database by the time they reach 20-weeks-old, will come into effect on Monday June 10.

Charity Cats Matter, which helped bring the law into fruition, is warning that if owners do not have the procedure taken care of by then, they will be breaking the law and risk facing a fine of up to £500.

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As well as a fine, legislation gives local authorities the power to confiscate cats and microchip them, before returning them to the owner and handing them the bill.

If cats are found injured and are not microchipped, they could face euthanasia, warns the charity. Photo: William KoumIf cats are found injured and are not microchipped, they could face euthanasia, warns the charity. Photo: William Koum
If cats are found injured and are not microchipped, they could face euthanasia, warns the charity. Photo: William Koum

Once the new law comes into force, owners found without their cat microchipped will have just 21 days to have one implanted, before facing a fine.

It explains that, for veterinary practices, animal welfare organisations and local councils, it can be incredibly challenging to reunite unchipped pet cats with their owner if they are missing or have been stolen.

Microchipping is an inexpensive procedure, and is fairly simple and quick to do and can save owners the heartache of never getting their cats back, or never having closure should the worst happen.

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The charity has warned that cats who are found injured and are not microchipped could end up being euthanised.

A spokesperson said: “Sadly, we see it all the time where road accident victims end up being euthanised with simple cuts and bruises, simply because no owner could be located via a microchip. When we say it could be a matter of life and death, we are not joking and as the UK’s only feline road traffic accident focus group, we sadly see it all the time and are powerless to stop it - but owners can stop it happening to their cat simply by microchipping them and keeping registered details up to date.

“We would urge owners to comply with the new law because it is working for them and their cats, not against.”

For more information visit the Cats Matter website.