This has been one of today's headlines. Thankfully the story behind the banner is not one about canine DNA contaminating the humble potato. That would have been an easy mistake to make after the recent stories of contaminated beef burgers. Or were they horse-burgers?
No the news is that England is following little old Northern Ireland and bringing in compulsory microchiping of dogs. Mind you the legislation is only to be effective from 6th April 2016. This does seem a rather long lead in period. Non compliance by an owner could result in a fine of up to £500. Personally I think that the fine should be mandatory subject to exemptions. Dog ownership is a privilege, but it must be subject to obligations.
Hopefully having dogs chipped will mean that more dogs that slip their leads are returned to their owners. At the moment only fifty percent of stray dogs are returned to their owners. It is of course important that owners keep their personal details up to date and the legislation must ensure that a change of dog ownership results in a mandatory updating of the register.