Statement on the American XL Bully


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The Pet Education Training and Behaviour Council (PETbc) of Great Britain acknowledges the concerns surrounding dog-related attacks in our communities. Whilst there have been calls to single out specific breeds, such as the American XL Bully, in an attempt to prevent such incidents from occurring, we firmly believe that addressing this issue necessitates a broader and more comprehensive approach.

Current laws already in place regulate the responsibility of owners for the behaviours of their dogs, both in public spaces and within private homes. They provide a framework to ensure responsible ownership and the safety of everyone: they need to be applied but seldom are.

Our stance, supported by expert opinions from our canine specialists, is that simply singling out particular breeds or breed types will not effectively prevent future incidents. Dog ownership involves not only the breed, but also the responsibility of the individuals who own and handle these animals. Therefore, we advocate for a multifaceted strategy that encompasses both breed-specific and owner-focused measures.

Banning specific breeds has historically shown that it can lead to a cycle where one banned breed is replaced by another. For instance, when Pit Bulls were banned, we witnessed the emergence of not only ‘Pit Bull Types’, but also American Bully types.

Whilst breed-specific bans may seem like a quick solution, they do not address the root causes of dog-related incidents. We must focus on the people who own and handle these animals, ensuring that they are educated, responsible and accountable for their pets. By taking this comprehensive approach, we can work together to create safer communities for everyone. 

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Released: 16th September 2023

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