No cull of American XL bully canine in UK regardless of ban – however homeowners face new guidelines

The UK’s chief veterinary officer has burdened there will probably be an amnesty earlier than a ban on American XL bully canine, after an skilled mentioned the breed was behind virtually half of all assaults on people and canine killed since 2021.

An amnesty for XL bullies will imply present animals are usually not culled, however that homeowners are required to register and hold them leashed and muzzled in public, Dr Christine Middlemiss mentioned.

Rishi Sunak introduced on Friday that the XL bully could be banned by the top of the yr after it emerged a person within the West Midlands died following an assault on Thursday by canine suspected to be XL bullies.

It was the most recent in a sequence of maulings by the breed – six of the ten deadly canine assaults within the UK final yr had been linked to XL bullies, and not less than three of the seven this yr.

Making the case for the ban on Instances Radio after some animal charities opposed it, Dr Lawrence Newport described the breed as “uniquely harmful”.

“This canine breed is chargeable for over 70% of all deaths to canine since 2021; it’s chargeable for practically 50% of all assaults on each people and different canine. In a single week in July this yr, one canine a day was killed by an American bully,” he mentioned.

Whereas the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) and others have argued that including the breed to the UK’s checklist of banned canine is not going to stem the rise in assaults, Newport provided a comparability to assaults by pit bulls, which have been legislated in opposition to for the reason that the Harmful Canines Act 1991.

“That ban has been very profitable. And we all know that as a result of for instance, within the UK, now we have half the per capita deaths to canine that the US does, and that distinction is completely defined by pit bulls,” he mentioned, including that the breed was chargeable for about 60% of deaths to canine within the US.

Middlemiss instructed BBC Radio 4’s At present programme {that a} ban on XL bullies could be simply one of many measures, stressing the significance of figuring out the place these animals had been within the nation. “There’s additionally an enormous quantity of labor ongoing already, about accountable breeding, accountable possession and training of people that hold canine which have the potential to be harmful.”

However questions stay across the timescale of the ban’s introduction. The meals and farming minister, Mark Spencer MP, warned on Friday that banning the breed, which is formally recognised by the Royal Kennel Membership, was “not as easy” as it could seem and should take longer than anticipated.

“We’re going to must undergo the method of figuring out the traits of that sort of canine and make it possible for we don’t encapsulate the fallacious kind of canine in that course of. It’s going to take a short while to do this,” he instructed the BBC’s Any Questions? programme.

The breed, which was first launched to the UK round 2014, has soared in reputation lately however there’s a dearth of dependable information on their numbers. Regardless of the breed being chargeable for a excessive proportion of deadly assaults, Bully Watch, a bunch that has pushed for the ban, believes they make up lower than 1% of all owned canine throughout the nation.

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