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XL Bullies rushed to Scotland from Wales and England before adoption ban enforcement

17 Dec 2023 3 minute read
Helen. Image: Cardiff Dogs Home

Stephen Price

With new rules set to come into force on 31 December, multiple reports are surfacing of XL bullies being rushed from Wales and England into Scotland.

Photos are currently being shared across social media platforms showing cages with XL bullies being transported north of the Scottish border ahead of the ban on the breed.

A number of online crowdfunding pages have also been created which are seeking donations to help ferry dogs from Wales and England before rehoming them becomes a criminal offence.

Increase in abandonment

The new rules will make it illegal to breed, sell, advertise, exchange, gift, rehome, abandon or allow XL bully dogs to stray in Wales and England. Owners will also be required to muzzle their dogs while in public areas.

As it stands, the new rules apply to England and Wales. The Scottish Government has not made a decision to ban the breed yet, but says that the evidence will be reviewed.

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “We are carefully considering the evidence as to whether changes to ban the XL Bully dogs and breed will be applied in Scotland.”

Across Wales, rescue centres have seen a marked increase in XL bullies being abandoned, with the RSPCA recently sharing a report about one left outside the gates of a rehoming centre in Newport.

Helen. Image: Cardiff Dogs Home

Helen is just one dog facing an uncertain future at Cardiff Dogs Home, The Rescue Hotel. Like many other dogs with her appearance, she is not an XL but a standard bully, but she still might meet the requirements of the ban which will mean it will be illegal for her to be rehomed in the new year.

Despite thousands of shares and repeated attempts to re-post her situation, her smiley face and her adventures around Cardiff Bay she is still waiting for a home.

Volunteers at the rescue centre have been in tears and in a social media post have said they ‘cannot cope with the thought of her being put to sleep for doing absolutely nothing wrong in her life apart from being let down by some humans’.

“Breaking my heart”

Megan Bevan, a bully owner from Swansea who has been trying desperately to help local shelters find homes for dogs thought to be affected by the ban said: “The new measures are causing a great deal of suffering to owners and many innocent dogs. So many are being given up because of the confusion, extra costs and bad press, and the arbitrary cut off date for rehoming them will mean many are confined in kennels for the rest of their lives.”

She added: “It’s breaking my heart to see innocent dogs being abandoned or put to sleep. Rescue centres are already stretched to their limits with the cost of living crisis impacting them from all angles. I can understand extra measures being taken to safeguard people, but to cage and distress dogs for life at the expense of rescue centres makes no sense whatsoever – this element of the ban needs a desperate rethink.”

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Friar Bevan
Friar Bevan
6 months ago

Scotland will review once a few more people/children, have been eaten/ripped apart. These dogs are not and should not be pets. 240 times more likely to attack another dog than any other dog. They make up 1% of the dog population but account for over half of all human killings by dogs , one good thing Sunak has done

6 months ago

Shame that the SNP cares more about playing nationalist politics than pubic safety.

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