Microchipping Your Dog


Microchipping your dog

Under the Dog Control Act 1996, the following dogs must be microchipped:

  • dogs registered for the first time after 1 July 2006
  • dogs classified as 'menacing' or 'dangerous' after 1 December 2003
  • unregistered dogs impounded after 1 July 2006
  • registered dogs impounded twice after 1 July 2006

The microchip must be inserted within two months of the registration date. The microchip is approximately the size of a grain of rice and is injected into the scruff of a dog's neck. It has a unique number that can be listed on both council records and the National Dog Database. Once microchipped, your dog can be "scanned" for his or her microchip number and easily identified through either database.

There are two major reasons for microchipping a dog:

  • to identify a lost or stolen dog and return him or her to the owner
  • to identify a dog which has been aggressive and classified as dangerous or menacing. This is especially important if a dog owner attempts to disguise the dog's identity.

Free micro-chipping

With current registration, comes FREE micro-chipping! The Council will be holding four micro-chipping clinics a year at the

Leckie Street Dog Park in Timaru.

Dates and times are as follows:

  • Saturday 31 July 2021 - POSTPONED - new date 28 August 2021 - CANCELLED: Unfortunately due to Covid lockdowns this has been cancelled.
  • Saturday 30 October 2021
  • Saturday 29 January 2022
  • Saturday 30 April 2022

If you would like your dog to be micro-chipped please come into the Council, Temuka or the Geraldine Service Centres and fill out a micro chipping form prior to the clinic you wish to attend.

If you would like your dog/s micro-chipped outside of the set clinics or you would like our officers to visit your home, there will be a $25 fee.

Why do we need to micro-chip our dogs?

  • If your dog is lost and found the Council can easily re-unite you both.
  • It's been a law since 2006 for all dogs to be micro-chipped (except for working farm dogs).
  • If your dog has been impounded declared dangerous or menacing then it will need to be micro-chipped even if it was registered prior to 2006.


All dogs registered for the first time after 1st July 2006 must be micro-chipped unless they are:

  • Working dogs used solely, or principally for the purposes of driving stock,
  • Existing dogs,other than those listed above.

Please note that unregistered "microchip exempted" working dogs that are impounded for whatever reason will lose their exempt status and will be required to be microchipped. The same applies for registered "exempt" dogs impounded for a second time. This can result in increased fees for micro-chipping.

If you believe your dog should not be microchipped for any reason, you must write to the Council explaining why not. Include all relevant documentation (e.g. a certificate from a registered vet about your dog's health condition).


If your dog is not microchipped and should be, you will have committed an offence under the Dog Control Act 1996 and:

  • may be issued with an infringement notice with a fee of $300
  • if the Court considers the matter, (e.g. through a defended hearing of the infringement notice), the Court may impose a fine up to $3000.00
  • an animal control officer may seize and impound your dog until you agree to microchip him/her. If your dog is impounded and you do not agree to pay for its micro-chipping, your dog may be adopted or euthanised seven days after impoundment.

Last updated: 24 Aug 2021