When a Microchip is Required:

All dogs, other than some working dogs*, must have a microchip ID tag implanted beneath their skin if their first registration in New Zealand was on or after July 1, 2006.

Dog control officer microchipping a puppyThis is not required for dogs who were first registered before then, except those classified as dangerous, menacing or impounded.

* a working dog is any dog kept solely or principally for the purposes of herding or driving stock.

Microchipping Clinics

We provide monthly microchipping clinics at its service centres. The clinics are free for those dogs who are legally required to be microchipped. Please note that:

  • The Rolleston HQ is in Norman Kirk Drive.
  • Microchipping will not take place if wet.
  • This service is only offered once a month.
  • If, because of distance or dog numbers, you can't get to a clinic, you may arrange for an Animal Control Officer to do the microchipping at your place.

Microchipping clinics usually happen on one Friday of every month and last for only half an hour. Please note that working dogs and dogs registered before July 1, 2006 can still be microchipped free of charge.

About Microchips

The microchip is a rice-sized digital I.D. tag that is inserted into the scruff of a dog’s neck.

The chip’s unique I.D. number gives the dog a secure lifelong identity.

  • This enables lost, stolen, abandoned, stray, injured or dangerous dogs to be identified and matched with their registered owners, no matter where they are found or in what condition.
  • It also allows councils to send better factual information to the National Dog Database, so that, as a nation, we can have a better handle on dog numbers, breeds and their roles in our community.

Dogs who were registered before 1 July 2006 do not have to be microchipped. Nor do working dogs (any dog kept solely or principally for herding or driving stock). Microchipping is only required for:

  • non-working dogs being registered for the first time;
  • dogs classed as dangerous or menacing after 31 November 2003, and
  • impounded dogs who are unregistered or are repeat offenders.

Owners must get their dogs microchipped within two months of registration.

The council offers a free microchipping service for newly registered dogs (but not dogs classified as dangerous or menacing).

  • Newly registered working dogs may also take advantage of this service, getting the benefits of a permanent identity and greater security, even though they are not legally obliged to be microchipped.
  • Our Animal Control Officers are trained and certified to insert microchips and will advertise the time and place in each area. Most vets will also insert microchips, however there will be a fee and you are still required to provide the 15 digit chip number to Council.

Dogs that are already microchipped:

If a dog has already been microchipped by someone other than the council (i.e. a vet or another local authority), the owner will need to prove this by showing the relevant documents or by attending a microchipping clinic where an Animal Control Officer can scan the dog.

Microchipping versus registration:

Microchipping is a one-off event, but annual registration is also necessary to update the details of each dog's age, address and owner. All dogs older than 3 months must be registered every year beginning July 1.

Choosing not to microchip your dog:

The fine for not complying is $300 per dog.


For further information on any of these issues please contact Animal Control or email us at animalcontrol@selwyn.govt.nz