Buying and owning a pet

There are around 51 million pets in the UK. From dogs and cats, to parrots and rabbits, our pets prove we are a nation of animal-lovers.  Almost half of us own a pet.

Research shows that having an animal to care for can help people deal with anxiety and depression. With more people starting to work from home, many are looking for pets to keep them company.

At the start of the coronavirus lockdown, the number of people looking to buy a puppy rose by 168%.

But as the popularity of dogs rose, so did prices, along with the number of complaints about fraudulent sellers.

Three ways owning a pet could bring you into contact with the law

April is National Pet Month - a chance to celebrate life with pets. Most pet owners will do anything for their pets, whatever the time of year. Some even leave millions behind for their animal friends. Sadly, other pet owners fail to meet even the basic needs of their pets required by law.

1. Leaving a gift for your pet in your will

Pets and the law

From trips to the vet to micro-chipping, being a good pet owner means knowing the law.

Mandatory micro-chipping

They say dogs are man's best friend, and losing a much-loved pet can be devastating. Micro-chipping offers the best chance of a missing animal's safe return.

More than 86% of UK dog owners have already micro-chipped their pets. But, on 6 April this year, micro-chipping dogs became compulsory. Any dog over the age of eight weeks must be micro-chipped and registered on a national database.