Mandatory micro-chipping of dogs to come into effect from 2016

Animal Health and Welfare bill passed by both houses of the Oireachtas

Legislation for the mandatory micro-chipping of dogs and the criminalisation of attendance at dogfights has been passed by both houses of the Oireachtas and will be signed into law by President Michael D Higgins in the coming days.

Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney said the Animal Health and Welfare Bill represents "a significant step forward" in the area of animal health and welfare law.

The Bill will strengthen laws on animal baiting and dog fighting. Those attending dogfights will now be liable for prosecution.

It will also allow the courts to bar individuals convicted of serious animal welfare offences from keeping animals.


The mandatory micro-chipping of dogs will come into force from 2016 – there will be public consultation on its implementation in due course.

Owners will be required to ensure animals are fed, watered, given suitable housing and checked regularly.

“This Bill will apply across the board – both to rural and urban areas – and to all animals whether they are commercial, domestic or other,” said Mr Coveney.

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter