Just sent off a letter to the Coventry Telegraph. Please complain if you feel like it!!!
Coventry Council Street Services and Micro-chipping.
Today a distraught Coventry resident phoned up the Petsearch help-line to let me know that her missing pet cat had been run over and killed last week. The cat was micro-chipped so we were hopeful of being able to trace the animal, knowing that if the cat was taken to a rescue centre, vets or reported to me as a stray, it would be scanned and re-united with its owner. In this instance the cat was positively identified as it was taken into a chemist after the accident and the incident filmed by the security cameras. Street services were called to remove the body.
One of the numbers I advise people to phone in the search for their missing pet is the Coventry City Council Street Services helpline on 0500 834333.
The Street Services team are responsible for picking up animal bodies and at some point went to the expense of buying a microchip scanner so that they could scan domestic animals and therefore, if chipped, contact the owners.
Over the years of running the Petsearch (cats) line, I have heard varying reports about if the scans actually take place. Several people have told me they have been informed by council employees that they do not scan the bodies.
Going by the number of calls I receive each week many of you will know of the worry caused by a pet going missing and those of you who follow the general advice to have you pet micro-chipped will feel justifiably let down by the Street Services. It takes very little time to scan an animal and saves the owner from prolonged worry and effort in trying to find their pet.
I am currently talking to Street Services to ask them to inform me of all domestic animals they collect so that I can add it to my database. In this way, if the scan is not performed or not done correctly, at least we may be able to match the animal up by its description and location.
It seems a waste of Council money that a scanner has been bought but is not being used – Perhaps they would like to donate it to one of the police stations that look after stray dogs when the animal wardens have finished for the day? The Animal Welfare team at the Council also encourage people to microchip their pets and it seems a shame that this attitude is not adopted by other sections of the council.
If you have had experience of this or feel upset enough then can you please complain to the council on the above number, or email at email@example.com. Councillor Kevin Foster is the Cabinet Member for City Services and can be emailed at Kevin.firstname.lastname@example.org or send a letter to the Council house, Earl Street Coventry CV1 5RR.