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Equine Microchipping Becomes Compulsory

Equine Microchipping Compulsory In England From 1 October 

From the 1st of October, equine microchipping (horses, ponies, and donkeys) will become mandatory in England. This means that all equine owners will have to microchip their animals before autumn arrives. If not, you could face sanctions and fines of up to £200 from local authorities. Therefore, before the 1st of October, it is vital that you: 

  1. Book an appointment with your equine vet for the microchipping. 
  2. After, this will need to link up to the equine passport.  
  3. Head to the ‘Digital Stable’ to update your details on the Equine register. 

equine microchipping

Why is equine microchipping being introduced? 

  • It helps to find a lost or stolen horse to increase the likelihood of an owner being reunited with their animal. Microchipping is an important attempt to stop the problem of horse theft in its tracks. 
  • If a horse has been mistreated, it makes it a lot easier to identify the irresponsible owner. This means that they will be held accountable for subjecting it to poor animal welfare. In 2019, 875 horses were rescued by the RSPCA, 70% of these were not microchipped. 
  • To improve the traceability of a horse through the food chain which will also help to protect equines from disease outbreaks. 

equine microchipping

It is concerning the number of horses that are dumped, abandoned, or mistreated. This new law will guarantee they receive the love, care, and attention they deserve. 

For more info, Visit Defra Press Release here.  

To learn about the microchipping of dogs, click here.

*** Update 2021 ***

  • England: all equines to be microchipped by 1st October 2020.
  • Wales: all equines to be microchipped by 12th February 2021.
  • Scotland: all equines to be microchipped by 28th March 2021.


Zoe Allison

Zoe Allison

Writer and expert