There are currently three methods of permanently identifying a
dog - by microchip, tattoo or DNA profile - and the Kennel Club
believes that all three have a role to play in helping to reunite
dogs with their owners, should they go missing.
It is a requirement of the Kennel Club Assured Breeder Scheme
that all members must permanently identify any dog which is to be
bred from, and all three methods of identification are accepted.
Since January 2010, all dogs presented under the BVA/KC Canine
Health Schemes must also be permanently identified by either
microchip or tattoo.
The only method of permanent identification now deemed suitable
by Defra under the Pet Travel Scheme is the microchip, with no dog
born after 4thJuly 2011 allowed to travel overseas purely on the
strength of a tattoo. Given the number of dogs which routinely
travel overseas with their owners since the relaxation of
quarantine restrictions, the Kennel Club feels that this is a
significant reason to choose microchipping as the preferred method
of identification at the present time.
The Kennel Club has spent a considerable amount of time
assessing the pros and cons of all three methods of permanent
identification. It feels that its support for microchipping as the
preferred method is further supported by the lack of people trained
to be able to carry out tattooing. Tattooing may fade with time,
can be difficult to detect on darker coated dogs and is considered
to be more painful to the animal than implanting a microchip.
DNA profiling - while the most 'fool proof' of all - does not allow
for 'instant' identification of a found dog though it may be used
as confirmation of the identification of a dog in the event of any
uncertainty using the other two methods.
Last updated - November 2013