The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) announced a ban on the ownership of certain types of “dangerous dogs” from Sunday 26 May in England and Wales.
The ban, part of the Government’s Dangerous Dogs Act 1991, will affect four breeds of dogs – Pit Bull Terrier, Japanese Tosa, Dogo Argentino and the Fila Braziliero – commonly referred to as the “XLBully breeds”.
Any owners of these breed of dogs in England and Wales will be liable for criminal prosecution if they do not meet the necessary criteria which includes; being able to prove type, meeting insurance requirements, having their dog neutered and muzzled when in public.
The ban has been introduced in response to evidence of a growing public concern over the levels of dog aggression in the UK, with figures demonstrating higher rates of injury associated with certain breeds.
DEFRA stated that the ban is intended to improve people’s safety by reducing the risk of injuries arising from particularly aggressive dogs and acknowledged that responsible owners and breeders can continue to own and breed the four breeds of dogs, provided they comply with the new requirements.
The ban on XLBully breeds is expected to take effect from Sunday, 26 May.