Understand SA’s new pet microchipping laws

Under new laws, cats and dogs in South Australia need to be microchipped. Learn what you need to do to comply.

Are you a pet owner? You might already be up to speed with the new pet desexing laws that are coming into play in South Australia, but did you know there are also changes to laws about microchipping?

It’s all to make sure that more lost cats and dogs are returned safely back to their owners.

Here’s what you need to know:

Microchipping for peace of mind

Microchips are tiny devices implanted under the skin of a dog or cat’s shoulder to provide a safe and permanent means of identification.

It’s a tiny thing, but a microchip can make a big difference. If your pet becomes lost, there’s a much better chance it will come home again if it has one.

Collars can come off or be removed, but the microchip will always be there, allowing vets, councils and shelters to quickly find your contact details and get your fur kid back home.

Microchips are about the size of a grain of rice and are implanted with a needle, making getting a chip as quick and as easy as getting a vaccination.

They do not cause any ongoing discomfort, there’s no batteries or moving parts, and the scanning process is harmless.

What are the new laws

From 1 July this year, all dogs and cats in South Australia must have a microchip in place by the age of 12 weeks, or within 28 days of acquiring the animal.

This requirement is one of the legislative changes aimed at reducing the number of dogs and cats ending up in shelters every year.

If your pet is already microchipped, it’s important to make sure you keep your contact details up to date on the new Dogs and Cats Online system to be rolled out 1 July 2018.

If your pet does not yet have a microchip, any vet can implant one for you, or Chipblitz runs discount microchipping days throughout the year at various locations around the state. This service costs just $10, so it’s worth keeping an eye out for local events.

The great news is that if you’re thinking of getting a new pet, shelters like the Animal Welfare League and RSPCA already microchip and desex all their dogs and cats before they are adopted.

Did you know …

Many councils offer a registration discount if your dog is microchipped? Check with your council to see what you might be entitled to.

What’s next for pets?

The new desexing laws are one of many changes being made in SA to ensure the welfare of our dogs, cats and other companion animals.

The changes are the most significant to our companion animal management laws in more than 20 years.

Here’s what else is part of the package:

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If you’re interested in learning more, check out our recent blogs about pet desexing, breeding standards in SA, the benefits for landlords of having pet-friendly rental properties, and how you can secure one as a tenant.

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