XL Bully neutering

With the deadline for the XL Bully type dogs and the owner led exemption process by the 31st of January fast approaching, we are writing to inform you of some financial support towards neutering costs for owners in need.

As you will be aware owners can exempt their dog before neutering (see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/prepare-for-the-ban-on-xl-bully-dogs) but need to provide evidence of neutering by the following dates:

  • For dogs less than 1 year old on 31 January 2024, it must be neutered by 31 December 2024
  • For dogs older than 1 year old on 31 January 2024, it must be neutered by 30 June 2024

For some owners the cost of neutering may be a barrier to exemption. Blue Cross, Battersea and RSPCA have developed a joint scheme to support responsible owners, with well cared for dogs, for whom the cost of neutering is prohibitive. We hope this will help avoid situations where owners might otherwise choose euthanasia.Owners will need to demonstrate that they have gone through the other stages of the exemption process.

The scheme will be managed through the Blue Cross’s Veterinary Care Fund and will launch  on 5 February 2024. In the interim, RSPCA branches are providing vouchers where a more urgent need is identified.

Practices can apply online on behalf of their clients and the charities will provide up to a maximum £250 towards the cost of neutering eligible XL Bully type dogs. The amount of the award will vary based on the dog’s gender and procedure. Payment will be made directly to the veterinary practice.

While we understand the pressure that practices are under at the moment, we would be grateful if you could support owners in need by meeting the requirements of the exemption process and help keep pets and their people together.

As of the 31st of December rescues can no longer rehome XL Bully type dogs, so while we understand that practices and vets may not want to euthanise healthy animals we are afraid that rescue organisations can no longer help these dogs. We would ask that you consider what is likely to be in the best welfare interests of the dog. We are now seeing an increase in abandonments, putting even great pressure on our teams who are dealing with the heartbreaking reality for dogs they have been caring for.

Source:Vetclick.com

Exemption rules

Judging by the number of calls we received yesterday and this morning it seems that one incident being shared without much detail on Facebook has created a massive amount of confusion amongst owners regarding leashing and muzzling. It was stated that the muzzling requirement became active as soon as you exempted your dog, this is incorrect but in itself does no harm as muzzling a dog early and before the deadline is not an issue, however it seems that people are believing that this means that until you exempt your dog you do not have to muzzle and leash THIS IS NOT THE CASE and some people are considering delaying exempting until the last minute on that basis which puts you in a position where you can be criminally charged and your dog is at risk.
We must make this absolutely clear that regardless as to whether or not you have exempted your dog yet if it has substantial characteristics of an XL Bully type then it had to be muzzled and leashed in public from 00.01am on Sunday morning, failure to do so could in the next few weeks lead to the seizure of your dog and if charges are brought against you they will be criminal charges as civil applications cannot be used until it becomes illegal to own, possess, or keep an XL Bully due to the wording in section 4 of the Act.

For information purposes
The Statutory instrument made on 31st October 2023 designated the XL Bully as a prohibited breed under section one of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 with the commencement date of 31st December 2023 and within section one is contained the requirement to muzzle and leash therefore from the date the breed is added the muzzle and leash requirement must be adhered to. The exemption rules were made in parliament on the 14th November and allow owners to exempt dogs from the prohibition these also contain the requirement to muzzle and leash in the rules however a dog can only be exempted from the prohibition once the prohibition takes effect (00.01 31st December) which is why all of the government guidance states that dogs must be muzzled from then it does NOT state they must be muzzled as soon as owners apply for exemption from the prohibition BEFORE the breed is prohibited.

FOR THE AVOIDANCE OF ANY DOUBT IF YOU OWN A DOG THAT IN THE VIEW OF ENFORCEMENT HAS SUBSTANTIAL CHARACTERISTICS OF THE TYPE KNOWN AS THE XL BULLY WHETHER OR NOT YOU BELIEVE THAT TO BE THE CASE THEN FROM YESTERDAY THEY SHOULD BE MUZZLED AND LEASHED WHEN IN PUBLIC (OR IN A CAR THAT IS IN A PUBLIC PLACE) WHETHER YOU HAVE APPLIED FOR EXEMPTION OR NOT AS PER SECTION ONE OF THE DANGEROUS DOGS ACT 1991

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Owners and rescues please be aware that the XL Bully is added to section 1 of the Dangerous Dogs Act from the 31st Dec and with law that generally means (unless a time is stated) from 00.01am on the commencement date which means any rehoming needs to be done tomorrow before midnight and if you are walking your dog late tomorrow night then it must be muzzled and leashed by midnight. Similarly if you have your dog in the car in a public place it must be muzzled and leashed after midnight tomorrow.

Christmas at Deed Not Breed

It’s not how many of us wanted to spend Christmas this year but sadly there will be an awful lot of people in the same boat. Although it would be nice to have some time off, we feel that we need to be here for emergencies but would ask if the answer to your question isn’t on our page or our website, please message us and we will get back to you as soon as we possibly can

I would like to personally extend my thanks to Mel Rushmore for going above and beyond, as always, and being my Oracle and my rock.

Huge thanks also to Trevor and the team at Cooper & Co: Doglaw and Kathryn Jamieson-Sinclair and to everyone who has supported Deed Not Breed and continues to do so.

 

 

First reading by Sir Christopher Chope

Yesterday afternoon Sir Christopher Chope presented a Bill, the
Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 (Amendment) Bill in the House of Commons for first reading. The Bill would if passed prevent the Government from doing as it has just done with the American Bully XL . This, if passed, would alter the mechanism for adding breeds to the prohibited or restricted breed types meaning that before making any order to designate a type of dog for the purposes of section 1 or 2 of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 (ban or restriction), the Secretary of State must in future carry out a public consultation and publish a comparative review of data showing the incidences of fatalities resulting from bites of dogs of that type in the last three years. This would remove the governments powers currently within the legislation to effectively add breeds at the stroke of a pen by the Secretary of State. Whilst we believe the whole dangerous dog legislation needs to be overhauled to focus on prevention rather than punishment after the fact, we welcome this move as a sensible one and would recommend our followers to ask their MP’s to support it when it goes for second reading on Friday 23rd February 2024. We thank Sir Christopher Chope for bringing what is a sensible solution to prevent yet another knee-jerk reaction resulting from press pressure being repeated again in the future without evidence or asking the opinion of the public who after all put MP’s in parliament to serve them

Read here

Early Day Motion

As promised in yesterday’s petitions debate Sir Christopher Chope has tabled a prayer motion to annul the Dangerous Dogs (Designated Types) (England and Wales) Order 2023, this is the initial Statutory instrument used on October 31st to add the XL Bully to the current list of banned types. It is a fatal prayer motion which attempts to annul the SI and is the route to take when objecting to Negative Procedure Statutory Instruments. Sir Christopher Chope is within the forty day ‘prayer’ period but in order to secure an annulment it must be agreed by the house, the last time a fatal prayer was successful in the house was in 1979 but we wish him success in his objection to the adding of another breed to Section 1 of the Act

Dogs – Early Day Motion

Online registrations

NOTE TO OWNERS online registrations look to be taking longer than they were initially, we arecurrently getting owners who registered the day after applications opened who have received their exemptions today a week after they applied compared with hours to a couple of days last week

Some of our most commonly asked questions

This post contains some of the most frequent general questions we are being asked currently and our responses to them which whilst not constituting legal advice, will hopefully help owners of dogs which may be caught up in the addition of the XL Bully to the list of dogs prohibited under Section 1 of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991. If you have a general question that is not included below then please feel free to message us or post in the replies to this post and we will add it to the post with a response. We cannot give the answers to some questions that are individual and dependent on the circumstances, so in those situations please contact us directly in order that we can have access to all of the information we might need regarding your situation in order to provide the best advice possible.
Please can we ask that only questions are posted on this post in order that we can deal with them efficiently, as you can probably imagine we are also running the helplines and are very busy so it would make it much easier for us if all questions are on one post and the post contains only questions. Thank you in advance.
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Information on Social Media

We are really concerned about the, albeit well-intentioned, misinformation currently doing the rounds on social media and for the impact this might eventually have on the owners of XL Bully types and, more importantly, on their dogs.

There are many, many, posts telling people not to apply for exemption, mainly based on two reasons, one being a debate to be held on 27th November and the other being a Pre-Action Protocol Letter which has been sent to the government, this is the first step to applying for Judicial Review.

The Debate
The debate scheduled for 27th November in parliament which, it is being claimed, will rediscuss the Bill, and the posts we have seen also indicate is an appeal against the Statutory Instrument currently laid before parliament adding the XL Bully to the list of prohibited breed types and that it could amend, or even do away with it completely meaning you would not need to exempt your dog.

THIS IS NOT THE CASE This is not a debate or a vote on whether or not to ban the XL Bully, it HAS been banned (effective 31st December 2023) and the Statutory Instrument is currently laying before a parliament with cross-party support in favour of it.
The debate on the 27th November is about the E-PETITION to the government requesting them not to ban the XL Bully and also at the same time the petition to repeal the current Dangerous Dogs Act and replace it with a new framework.
Both of these petitions got over 100,000 signatures and Government petitions which reach 10,000 signatures qualify for a response and at 100,000 signatures are considered for debate which in most cases is granted, as it has been with these two.
The government response to the XL Bully petition is plain for all to see. Long after the petition reached 100,000 signatures they issued a statement announcing they were to be banned and have since laid the Statutory Instrument before Parliament that does just that.

The response to the second petition regarding repeal of the DDA received a response from the government in which the government said,
“We recognise that some people are opposed to the prohibitions placed on the four types of dog under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991. However, the Government must balance the views of those who want to repeal or amend breed-specific legislation with our responsibility to ensure that the public is properly protected from dog attacks. We currently have no plans to repeal the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 and replace it with a new legal framework.”

THIS DEBATE WILL CHANGE NOTHING, it can’t.  As the attached screenshot from the UK Parliament website confirms “Petitions debates can’t directly change the law or result in a vote to implement the request of the petition. They can help to raise awareness of the issue among MPs and the wider public, and put pressure on the Government.”

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