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Dog Chipping Bill Makes Sense

8 April 2005

Dog Chipping Bill Makes Sense

Federated Farmers strongly supports a members' bill tabled yesterday that would exempt farm dogs from compulsory microchipping, said Charlie Pedersen, Vice President of Federated Farmers of New Zealand (Inc).

Under a law passed last year, all dogs first registered after July 1 2006 must be implanted with a microchip.

"Federated Farmers has always been convinced that microchipping dogs, especially farm dogs, is a waste of time and money. The estimated cost of microchipping rural dogs has been put at $3 million to $7 million a year," Mr Pedersen said.

"Microchipping will not stop dog attacks. Rather than aid identification of dogs that attack, the added cost of microchipping will further discourage people from registering their dogs -- increasing non-compliance. Already, nearly one out of two dog owners don't register their dogs.

"The Minister of Local Government agrees with Federated Farmers that microchip scanners have a maximum range of only 5 cm. Any thought of reading the chip of a dog while attacking farm stock is a pipe dream," Mr Pedersen said.

"Farmers will be pleased that enforced microchipping of farm dogs will be reconsidered by Parliament -- assuming the Dog Control (Exemption of Farm Dogs) Amendment Bill tabled by National Agriculture spokesman David Carter is pulled from the ballot."

ENDS

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