Stranded pup Ollie back home with owner in Saffron Walden

PUBLISHED: 16:03 14 August 2009 | UPDATED: 21:53 31 May 2010

A PUPPY left stranded in France after his pet passport failed at customs has been reunited with his owner. Sgt Lindsay Beckman from Saffron Walden Police Station said she was ecstatic that her 11-month-old cocker spaniel Ollie had come home and, despite

A PUPPY left stranded in France after his pet passport failed at customs has been reunited with his owner.

Sgt Lindsay Beckman from Saffron Walden Police Station said she was "ecstatic" that her 11-month-old cocker spaniel Ollie had come home and, despite losing a lot of weight, was in good condition.

Sgt Beckman and her husband Nigel had taken their much-loved pet with them to the Dordogne in France, but their holiday turned sour when Ollie was refused entry back into the UK.

Ollie was fitted with a microchip which matches him to his vaccination record and passport. However, the chip was found to be faulty, and Ollie faced a lengthy six-month stay in quarantine before he could be let back into the country.

"We had to send the broken microchip back to the manufactures and thankfully they were able to confirm his original identification," said Sgt Beckman. "It has cost us almost £700 in travel expenses and the cost of the operation to remove the chip and have it examined, to get him back."

The pet passport scheme and microchip is currently the only accepted means of identification for a pet to travel in and out of the UK.

"They need to consider a secondary method of ID because if the microchip fails then people will be left with a lot of distress and a large bill," said Sgt Beckman. "We will be getting Ollie tattooed as another form of identification which is currently acceptable in France, but so far not in the UK.

"I'll be writing to the Kennel Club and the RSPCA to try and get their support in changing the rules on this issue."

For more information about pet passports visit Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs website at www.defra.gov.uk

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