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Wednesday, 21 November, 2001, 10:59 GMT
'Dating' program finds homes for dogs
Dog in a kennel at Battersea
Microchips help to find owners for unwanted dogs
A "computer dating" program is being used to match dogs with potential owners.

Battersea Dogs' Home commissioned the program from a Gloucestershire firm, to prevent animals being given to unsuitable people.

Animals at the home are being given microchips, which log all their details on the central computer system.

Would-be owners are questioned about their experience of owning pets. Goldfish do not count.

They are also asked about the size of their home, and whether it is in a town or the country.

Pups at Battersea
Battersea takes in around 30 animals a day
Large animals that need space to run around would not be sent to a small inner-city home.

The Dogs' Home at Battersea takes in around 30 animals a day and has re-housing centres around the country.

The program has been created by Minerva Computer Systems, of Cheltenham.

Company spokesman Charles Bagnall said: "They came up with this idea to try to make sure people went away with the animal that was right for them."

Its creator Colin McCarthy said: "It can be used for absolutely any animal at all, from a mouse up to elephants, blue whales - anything you like.

"But you might have a problem microchipping some animals."

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29 Jun 01 | UK
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