What Details Should Be on a Dog ID Tag in the UK

Dog ID Tag UK Law Dog ID Tags What to Include on a Dog ID Tag

Keeping puppies and dogs safe is so important and a personalised dog ID tag can help with this, it is also required by law in the UK in The Control of Dogs Order 1992 to ensure that they have either an ID tag or the details inscribed on their collar. So what details should be included on a dog tag by law in the UK?

Owner's Name & Address

The Control of Dogs Order 1992 law outlines that ‘every dog while in a highway or in a place of public resort shall wear a collar with the name and address of the owner inscribed on the collar or on a plate or badge attached to it’, so an engraved tag is an easy way to comply with the law. The full legislation can be read on the government’s website. An example of what should be engraved on a dog ID tag in the UK, and comply with the law, would be:

1 High Street
DR18 9JY
Emma Smith
1 High Street
DR18 9JY


Our solid brass engraved dog tag with owner's address and contact number on the back

Phone Number

However, in addition to what is required by law in the UK, we also recommend including a contact phone number or even two and this is also recommended by the RSPCA. Our dog ID tags are made of solid brass or solid stainless steel and have space for four lines of information on each side, so there is plenty of space to include what is required by law and an additional phone number or two. Because our dog ID tags are engraved this means that your dog’s details will be clear to read, which is important. We recommend including at least one mobile number and either another mobile number or a landline if you choose to include two phone numbers. 

 What to put on a dog ID tag in the UK by law - miniature dachshund wearing a solid brass engraved dog ID tag
Our gorgeous friend @Lolalittledash wearing her solid brass engraved dog ID tag and orange vegan cork 'leather' collar

Other Details To Consider Including

I'm Microchipped

It’s also a requirement in the UK for all puppies over eight weeks to be microchipped, so it’s also important to keep your contact details updated on the microchip too, as this can help if their ID tag is missing or has been taken off. You may choose to include 'I'm Microchipped' or just 'Microchipped' or 'Chipped', if you are short of space, on your dog's ID tag. If they get lost and are still wearing their ID tag, including this is unlikely to help reunite you, as the phone number on the tag will be easier and quicker to use, but it might be good to include in case the phone number on the tag is out of date or isn't working for some reason. It could also discourage would be dog thieves if they see your dog is microchipped. The Blue Cross also recommend some other steps to help keep your dog safe, such as not leaving your dog tied up outside a shop or alone in a public place, making sure you don’t leave your dog alone in the car (we’ve written here about not doing this for other reasons too!) and also making sure your home and garden is secure.

I'm Neutered 

If your dog is a breed dog you may choose to include 'I'm neutered' or 'Neutered' on your dog's ID tag, as this could also discourage dog thieves who are looking to use dogs for breeding.  

Health Issues

If your dog has health issues and is on regular medication, you may choose to include 'On medication' or something similar on your dog's ID tag. This could be useful if they get lost, as it might encourage the person who finds them to contact you immediately or take them to a vet.   

What to Consider Not Including

Your Dog's Name

Most dog owners love to put their dog’s name on their ID tag, although this is not required by law and it is not always recommended. We love seeing dogs names engraved on our tags (because we get to find out their names!), but it is worth considering not including it because if your dog is stolen, the thief can use their name to gain trust, which could also help if they try to sell your dog. Unfortunately dog theft is common in the UK so it’s important to help keep your dog safe and make sure they have an ID tag with the correct contact details.

Dog or puppy ID tag in luxury solid brass with personalised engraving in the UK

If you do choose not to include your furry friend's name on your engraved dog tag, one alternative is to include his or her initial or initials to add a personalised touch without giving too many details.

Our solid brass engraved ID tag with initial.

Can You Put a Dog Tag on a Harness

The Control of Dogs Order law only mentions the requirement to have an ID tag on a dog's collar and does not mention dog harnesses, so we would always recommend that your dog wears a collar with an ID tag. If your dog also wears a harness we would recommend attaching a tag to their harness too. We've written about this in more detail here.

What Will Happen if my Dog Doesn't Wear an ID Tag?

In the UK you could be fined if your dog does not wear an ID tag, you can also be fined £500 for not microchipping your dog and registering their details on a government approved database. 

Are there Any Exemptions for Dogs Wearing ID Tags?

Most companion dogs or pets are not exempt from the law in the UK, but the Control of Dogs Order 1992 law outlines the following exemptions:

(a) any pack of hounds,

(b) any dog while being used for sporting purposes,

(c) any dog while being used for the capture or destruction of vermin,

(d) any dog while being used for the driving or tending of cattle or sheep,

(e) any dog while being used on official duties by a member of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces or Her Majesty’s Customs and Excise or the police force for any area,

(f) any dog while being used in emergency rescue work, or

(g) any dog registered with the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association.


The owner's name and address in addition to a phone number or two are the most important details to help reunite you with your furry friend if anything happens and of course make sure you are compliant with the law, but some of the other details might also be worth including if they are applicable to you and your dog. We hope that these tips will help to keep your dog safer and if in the worst case scenario something does happen, the correct information on their ID tag and microchip should give you a better chance of being safely reunited.

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