We are a Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) approved equine hospital.
New legislation came in to force in October 2018 regarding equine identification. The new legislation makes it a legal requirement for every horse, pony or donkey in the UK to not only have a valid UK passport but to also be microchipped. The identification details of every horse will be stored in a new Central Equine Database (CED).
The new legislation is being welcomed by the equine industry as it will give horses’ greater protection against theft, fraudulent sales and improve welfare. It is also hoped it will assist with the management of disease outbreaks, to allow mapping of horse populations and rapid communication with owners if required regarding a serious outbreak of infectious disease.
The Central Equine Database will log the details of all domesticated horses. Changes in ownership status of a horse will also be updated to the Central Equine Database by the Passport Issuing Body (PIB) who will do so within 24hours of being informed of any changes. It will also offer a much more streamlined solution for local authorities and police. The aim is to enable authorities to reunite owners with horses who have strayed or escaped fields more effectively, as well as find those irresponsible horse owners who abandon or mistreat animals and bring them to justice more swiftly.
From 2009, passport legislation came in that all foals must be microchipped when applying for a passport. Before this date however, there will be horses which have not have had microchips implanted due to it not being a legal requirement at the time, so there are a lot of horse’s which this will affect.
Those owners with horses born before this date have until October 2020 to ensure they comply with this new legal requirement. This will allow time for horse owners to have any animals’ microchipped when seeing a vet for other purposes, thus negating the need to pay for a separate call out specifically to have a microchip implanted.
To assist owners with older horse’s requiring microchips, BELL EQUINE shall be offering a reduced rate for supplying and implanting a microchip if we are already on the yard seeing the horse for another service e.g. for a vaccination, dental check or a lameness exam. Do please ask any of our vets when they attend your horse to scan for a microchip if you are unsure whether your horse has one implanted. We can easily implant one at the time or the next time we attend your horse or yard.
There is a press release on the Government website with more about the new compulsory microchipping legislation which you can read HERE.
For any further information, do not hesitate to contact any of our vets or reception team on 01622 813700.
The Horse Passport Regulations 2009 state that horses, ponies, donkeys and related animals (including Zebras!) must have a horse passport. You could get an unlimited fine if you cannot show a valid passport for an animal in your care, however, this will not be enforced by your veterinary surgeon
Foals must have a passport (and microchip) but the age of 6 months or 31st December in the year of their birth, whichever is later.
The passport must be kept with your animal at all times. You need to provide your horse's passport when a vet examines or treats your animal (either at your yard or at Bell Equine) and when you sell, or give the animal, to someone else.
If you buy a horse you should contact the passport issuing organisation (PIO) within 30 days.
When your horse dies, the passport should be returned to the PIO within 30 days.
All horse passports must have a section IX. This is to confirm whether or not the horse is intended or not intended to enter the human food chain. Some older passports do not have these pages. If this section is not present, you need to go back to the PIO that produced that passport and ask for the section to be included.
If you do not have any passport at all, we can organise for one to be issued. If you have a pure-bred horse and would like a breed society passport (for example the Shetland Pony Society), you can contact the society directly to obtained a passport application form. We can then complete the form and implant a microchip at your convenience for £65 when paid on the day with our usual prompt payment discount, plus any visit fee.
Alternatively we can supply PetId passports (which includes an identifying microchip with a full identification silhouette) for £90 when paid on the day with our usual prompt payment discount, plus any visit fee.
Please call the office on 01622 813700 if you would like more information.
We RECOMMEND that you sign to say that your horse is NOT going for slaughter for human consumption.
This allows administration of certain restricted medications, including phenylbutazone (“bute”, which includes Equipalazone and Danilon) and also other drugs (such as Prascend) without complicated record keeping and restrictions.
If a horse is prescribed any of these restricted medications, then it MUST be signed out of the human food chain. Your vet will be able to advise you further.
We would ask everyone to have the passport available for the BELL team to check when we visit or if you bring your horse, pony or donkey to the hospital. For this reason it is best kept by the keeper of the horse at the stable yard, if possible to do so. Many people also keep a copy elsewhere.
Once a horse passport is signed out of the food chain it can never be changed, and provided that passport stays with that horse, then that animal can never be slaughtered for meat. Microchips are now required when a new horse passport is issued, which are used to double-check the identity of the horse against the passport.
If you would like all your horses’ passport information to be recorded, so we have it available in case of emergency, or if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us on 01622 813700.
There is still an enormous amount of confusion concerning the Passport legislation which came into force in February 2009. Under this legislation:
We strongly recommend that all our clients sign the section IX (or section 2 in newer passports) declaration that their horse or pony 'IS NOT INTENDED FOR SLAUGHTER FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION'. WE CANNOT LEGALLY SUPPLY OR ADMINISTER MANY MEDICINES IF THIS DECLARATION IS LEFT UNSIGNED.
We are seeing many passports which do not have the declaration signed even though the owners believe them to be in order, so do please check ALL your horse's passports.