UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced his intention to ban American bully XL dogs in the country, citing them as a danger to communities. This announcement followed a recent fatal attack believed to involve this breed and another attack causing serious injury to a child.
A man died from injuries sustained during an attack involving an American bully XL dog. Initially, a 30-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of having dogs dangerously out of control but later on suspicion of manslaughter.
Subsequently, there was another recent incident in England where an 11-year-old girl suffered severe injuries in an attack involving an American bully XL dog.
Neither the UK nor the US Kennel Clubs recognize the American bully XL as a unique breed, although some other organizations do acknowledge it. It was originally bred from the American pitbull terrier and strongly resembles that breed but is larger.
Prime Minister Sunak has tasked government ministers to work with police and experts to define the breed of dogs behind these attacks and to consider outlawing it. The American bully XL is not currently defined as a breed in law.
If added, the American bully XL would be the fourth breed banned under the 1991 Dangerous Dogs Act in the UK, joining the pitbull terrier (from which it was bred), the Japanese tosa, the dogo Argentino, and the fila Brasileiro.
British Home Secretary Suella Braverman also expressed her concern about American bully XLs and sought advice on outlawing them. She shared a news report showing an attack involving one of these dogs.
The UK Kennel Club argues that no breed of dog is inherently dangerous and suggests that demonizing certain breeds may make them more attractive to people who want to use dogs for violent or illegal purposes. They emphasize irresponsible dog owners as the primary factor in biting incidents.
The Federation of Veterinarians of Europe stated in 2019 that there was no scientific or statistical evidence to suggest that breed-specific bans reduce the frequency or severity of injuries to people.