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Circular 14-2017: Support Materials for Sale of Non-Microchipped Dogs and Cats

Last updated: 31/08/2017 5:55 PM
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​Several members of the public have recently queried whether it is lawful for a puppy or kitten to be sold if it is not microchipped.

Under the current provisions of the Dog Act 1976:

  • All dogs must be microchipped once they are three months of age; and
  • All dogs, irrespective of age, must be microchipped prior to being sold or transferred to a new owner.

These requirements apply to all dogs, unless the owner obtains a vet certificate which exempts the dog from microchipping on medical grounds.

Similar restrictions apply to the sale of non-microchipped cats. While a cat is not required to be microchipped until it is six months old, it cannot be sold or transferred until microchipping has occurred.

If any members of the community enquire about the sale of non-microchipped cats and dogs, local governments should advise them accordingly.

These restrictions also apply to impounded animals held by a local government. If a local government intends to sell or transfer a puppy or kitten, the animal will need to be microchipped before this can occur.

To assist, the department has produced fact sheets which summarise the legal obligations of pet ownership for cat and dog owners. The fact sheets are available on the department’s cats and dogs page.

If you have any queries on this issue, please contact Steven Elliott, Senior Legislation Officer on 6552 1642 or by email at
Duncan Ord
Director General
15 August 2017