XL Bully Ban: What We Know So Far

Posted: 19 Sep 2023 Human Reading Time: 3 Minutes
Dog Reading Time: 21 Minutes
XL Bully Ban: What We Know So Far

Published on 19/09/2023. This article is reviewed and updated regularly.

As the ban of the American XL Bully is unfolding and we learn more, this article will be updated with the latest information you need to know. Bookmark this tab for the latest updates.

The American XL Bully breed of dog will be added to the list of breeds that are banned in the UK by the end of 2023, according to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's announcement on Friday, September 15. The Government are currently convening with experts this week to define the breed. It will be the job of the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs to oversee this.

Once the breed has been defined, the Government will seek a 'statutory instrument' which will allow the breed to be listed under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991.

What is the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991?

The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 act prohibits the ownership, breeding, selling, and exchange of specific breeds. It also imposes strict regulations on the ownership of these dogs, including requirements for muzzling, leads, neutering, and insurance.

The law was put into effect to prevent dog attacks and increase public safety. It has, however, created controversy, with some arguing that it unjustly singles out certain breeds rather than encouraging responsible ownership and training.

Which breeds are banned in the UK?

Currently, the Dangerous Dogs Act specifically targets four breeds: Pit Bull Terriers, Japanese Tosas, Dogo Argentinos, and Fila Brasileiros. If the ban goes ahead as Prime Minister Rishi Sunak intends, the American XL Bully will be added to this list.

Who supports the XL Bully ban?

Keir Starmer, leader of the Labour Party, said: “Good, get on with it” when speaking about the ban on the XL Bully breed in a recent interview published on Independent TV. The proposed ban is currently supported by both the Conservative Party and the Labour Party.

The XL Bully amnesty period

Once the law for the American Bully XL to be banned has been passed, there will likely be an amnesty period. But what does this mean for XL Bully owners? The Government has stated that it will implement a 'transition period' for any current owners of XL bullies. The transition period will be from now till approximately 2025. During this transition period, all owners MUST contact the authorities to register their dogs.

Is it illegal to own an American Bully XL?

No, it is currently not illegal to own an XL Bully dog. However, this could change in the near future. We urge you to look after and care for your American XL Bully as you always would. It is now, more than ever, our dogs need our love and care.

Will my XL Bully be destroyed?

No, XL Bullies will not be destroyed. In a recent Government press release, it states: “We need to safely manage the existing population of these dogs, therefore there will be a transition period.

“Further details on how the transition period will work will be provided in due course.

“Current XL Bully dog owners do not need to take any action at this stage however, if XL Bully owners do not come forward during the transition period, they will be committing a criminal offence if they are subsequently found to be keeping one of these dogs.”

It is important to note from this press release that the Government wants to “safely manage the existing population of these dogs”, confirming that if you are the owner of an XL Bully, they will not be destroyed.

What to do if you own an XL Bully

If you already own an XL Bully, we understand how stressful this time is for you. As we have seen in the quote above, no immediate action is required. However, this could change in the near future. Owners of XL Bullies may need to:

  • Register for a Certificate of Exemption.
  • Have your XL Bully neutered.
  • Keep your XL Bully on a lead in public.
  • Keep your XL Bully muzzled in public.
  • Do not sell your XL Bully.
  • Do not attempt to breed your XL Bully.

As we learn more, this list will be updated.

Will I need to muzzle-train my XL Bully?

It is very likely you will need to train your Bully to be muzzle-trained when out in public.

Help stop the ban of the American XL Bully breed

Help stop the XL ban – sign the Official Petition today.

We will update this article when we have more information regarding the upcoming consideration of this debate.

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