Guide to microchipping obligations for dog owners

Please note that these guides do not constitute legal advice and any information provided in the guides should not be construed as legal advice or legal interpretation. We do not accept any liability for any loss caused by your reliance on this guide.

Microchipping of puppies and dogs

From September 2015 all puppies must be microchipped before being sold or given to a new owner.

From March 2016 all dogs in Ireland must be microchipped.

There are a number of websites that you can register your dog's microchip number on. This means if is lost and later found, it has a good chance of being returned to you. Dogs with a microchip can be scanned for a microchip by a vet or a pound for example. They can then enter the microchip number in an online database to find the owner’s contact details.

The four government approved databases are:-

What microchipping for dog owners/breeders

  • If you’re selling or giving a dog to a new owner, you must have the dog microchipped beforehand.
  • Microchipping can only be done by approved individuals such as vets. You’ll receive a cert to prove the dog has been microchipped.
  • While some vets will give you certification straight away, initially it may take a week to process, so make sure you get this done in plenty of time.
  • From September 2015 no one should sell a puppy without a microchipping certificate, so make sure you have your dog microchipped before placing an ad. The same goes for all dogs from March 2016.

How to get a dog microchipped

  • Book an appointment with the vet
  • You will need to bring:
    • The dog
    • Valid ID
    • Proof of address e.g. a recent utility bill
  • Your dog will be microchipped and certification issued
  • You can choose to register the dog on a database or leave this to the new owner. (A microchip without registration is worthless, as the owner can’t be traced if the dog goes missing, and is found).

Microchipping for buyers

Important dates

  • From September 2015 don’t buy or take in a new puppy without a microchip certificate.
  • From March 2016 don’t buy or re-home a dog that does not have a microchip certificate.


  • Register your dog online when you get it, using the number on the microchip certificate.
  • If the dog has already been registered, it’s really important you update your details so you’re easily contactable if your dog gets lost and is found. the chip is worth nothing unless it is registered.