Making sure you're properly caring for your pooch is vital to ensuring that you have a happy and healthy canine companion - and that includes everything from selecting the best dry dog food to providing them with plenty of opportunities to exercise.

But the problem is that this takes a lot of time, and in between training our mutts and teaching them that chewing the furniture is against the rules it's easy to forget certain aspects of canine care.

One area in particular that many of us proud pooch owners sometimes overlook is that of microchipping our dogs, which is why the government decided earlier this year that the procedure will be compulsory in England from April 2016.

And now it seems that Scotland could be set to follow suit, with Scottish Labour's rural affairs spokeswoman Claire Baker outlining potential plans to introduce such a law.

"Microchipping has a number of advantages such as returning stray dogs [and] easy identification of those undertaking animal cruelty," she said.

"With close to 3,000 stray dogs per year in Scotland, micro-chipping can help reunite worried owners while saving local authorities money through reduced kennelling costs"

Microchipping is a quick and painless procedure that can provide owners with the reassurance that they will always be able to track down their four-legged friend in the event that they get lost or stolen, while it can also help to regulate breeders and combat the problem of puppy farming.

This is one of the reasons why organisations such as the Dogs Trust have spoken out in favour of compulsory microchipping for our canine companions, which will also help vets when they're carrying out emergency procedures as they'll be able to access records quickly.

Whether or not microchipping does become compulsory, it's a great idea for protecting our four-legged friends and making sure we don't have to experience the heartache of losing them.

Written by: Hannah