If you haven't already had your dog microchipped then you really ought to. The reasons for doing so are numerous, with the small chips allowing owners to track down their pets when they go missing, therefore saving animals shelters and authorities valuable time and money, as well as sparing you the emotional turmoil of losing a pet.
But if that wasn't enough of an incentive, new rules have now been introduced by the government which will make it compulsory for all dogs in England to be microchipped as of April 6 2016.
The chips themselves are roughly the size of a grain of rice and are inserted between the animal's shoulder blades, with many organisations such as The Dogs Trust offering free microchipping services.
It is thought that stray dogs currently cost taxpayers and welfare charities around £57 million a year, and the government now hopes to limit this problem with the introduction of the new legislation.