Registered veterinary nurses (RVNs) are taking a lead role in delivering a new, nationally recognised microchipping qualification.

The Level 3 Award in Implantation of Identification Microchips in Animals, awarded by VetSkill, has been approved by Ofqual and recognised by Defra as an approved qualification for those looking to implant microchips into dogs, cats, rabbits and ferrets.

Legislation that came into effect earlier this year requires people who train to microchip these species – who are not vets, RVNs, veterinary students or student veterinary nurses acting under the direction of a vet – to undertake a qualification recognised by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Libby Earle, chief operating officer at VetSkill, said the legislation would help protect the welfare of animals.

“As such, it is something we fully welcome and support,” she said. “When developing this qualification we recognised it was vitally important to ensure its assessment was led by either a RVN or veterinary surgeon.

“Although microchipping is a relatively safe procedure, there is always a risk to the animal if it is not performed correctly; having the course led by a veterinary professional will help minimise these risks and ensure delegates are trained to the highest standard.”

People who successfully complete the qualification will have their name held on a central online list of qualified microchip implanters.

The first training provider to offer the VetSkill qualification will be the College of Animal Welfare, from its Cambridgeshire centre on Friday, October 9.

Organisations interested in offering the qualification can contact VetSkill on 01480 278580 or email For more information about the qualification, visit

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