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The XL Bully Ban is now in place. Following a rise in serious attacks involving XL Bully dogs, the UK Government has added this breed to the list of dogs banned under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991. The new restrictions now in force in England and Wales have led to mixed opinions, high emotions and much confusion! With many vet practices coming under fire for their stance on euthanasia of XL Bully types, it’s important for the profession to stand together, supporting each other.

Even if we don’t agree with the new legislation, it is our duty to support and educate our clients. Our new waiting room video educates clients as to the facts, in a neutral tone. The information includes:

What are the new rules?

Since the 31 December 2023, it is now illegal to breed, sell, advertise, gift, exchange, allow to stray or abandon XL Bully dogs. The XL Bully Ban runs from 1st February 2024, all XL Bully dogs must be registered, kept on a lead and muzzled when in public.  From 30th June 2024, XL Bully dogs over 1 year old must be neutered, and all XL Bully dogs must be neutered by 31st December 2024 (this extended window being for younger dogs, who are too young to currently be neutered).

The new rules can seem daunting and confusing, so this video lays them out in an easy to understand format.

What is an XL Bully?

Since XL Bully is a ‘type’, rather than a breed, there has been much confusion over which dogs will fall under the classification.

While the classification is too lengthy to explain in the video without causing more confusion, the video advises clients where they can find the information they need.

Importantly, since it’s up to the owner or keeper to self-identify whether a dog may be an XL Bully, we’ve not given specific advice here.

Applying for an exemption certificate

In England and Wales, from 1 February 2024 it is a criminal offence to own an XL Bully dog, unless the owner or keeper has a valid Certificate of Exemption.

If owners aren’t sure, the government advice is that they err on the side of caution and apply anyway. Many owners may not be aware of this.

By midday on 31 January 2024, owners of XL Bully dogs must have paid an application fee, have third party public liability insurance and applied for the certificate of exemption online, via the government website.

How can my vet help?

Many owners have the misconception that vets can identify whether a dog is an XL Bully. This video advises owners that it is down to them to self-identify whether a dog may be (or may grow up to be) an XL Bully. The video also explains what the vet practice can do to help and support them.

The video concludes by reminding owners that if they have an XL Bully dog without a Certification of Exemption, they may end up with a criminal record, an unlimited fine, and the authorities could seize their dog.

We have also included a QR code to enable waiting clients to access the latest information on the UK Government website. Click to view information.

With so many calls and advice requests coming in to vet practices on this highly emotive subject, take some pressure off your team and use this video to educate owners while they wait!

The Vet Channel can help you educate your clients whilst they are sat in the waiting area and also enable you to reach out to your clients through our social media video content. To find out more visit www.thevetchannel.co.uk