The annual Stray Dog Survey for 2015-2016 has now been published by charity Dogs Trust, and the good news is that the number of strays has fallen by 21%, and over half (43,767 of 81,050) were successfully reunited with their owners. However, this still leaves over 37,000 unclaimed dogs, who languished in council pounds last year.
What's even sadder? One in every eight of these remaining dogs had microchips - but microchips that were missing their owner's current contact details. It's likely these dogs were once loved pets but sadly, because of the missing information, they could not be reunited.
Dogs Trust's Chief Executive Adrain Burder commented, “What’s most saddening from this year’s figures is the 4,732 dogs who face destruction due to a lack of an up-to-date microchip. Compulsory microchipping came into force in Northern Ireland in 2012 and in England, Scotland and Wales on 6th April this year, with penalties being handed out to any dog owner whose pet doesn’t have an up to date microchip. We hope this new law will significantly bring down the number of stray dogs and have a very positive effect on next year’s Stray Dog Survey results.”