Number of 'out of control' XL Bullies more than doubled in last year

A total of 439 Dog Control Notices were issued by councils across the country in 2022 and 2023.

Number of ‘out of control’ XL Bully dogs in Scotland more than doubled between 2022 and 2023 Getty Images

The number of XL Bullies deemed to be “out of control” more than doubled between 2022 and 2023.

Figures released by the Scottish Government under the Freedom of Information Act from the Scottish Dog Control Notice Database showed the number of dog control notices given to XL Bulldogs rose from seven in 2022, to 15 in 2023.

The news comes after a ban was introduced on the breed in Scotland, following similar legislation in England and Wales.

As of February 23, XL Bully dogs must be muzzled and kept on a lead in public.

XL Bully owners in Scotland can apply for an exemption certificate so they can continue to legally own their dogs after the breed was banned

Owners have until July 31 to submit their application, after which it will be a criminal offence to own an XL bully without a certificate.

The figures from the Scottish Dog Control Notice Database showed that across 2022 and 2023, a total of 439 Dog Control Notices were issued by councils across the country.

In 2022, 212 dogs were deemed out of control in 2022 while the number rose in 2023 to 227.

Across the two year period, figures showed the number of Staffordshire Bull Terriers deemed out of control dropped from 29 in 2022 to 17 in 2023.

German Shepherds were the breed which received the most Dog Control Notices, with 23 in 2022 rising to 28 in 2023.

Two smooth coat chihuahuas were deemed out of control in 2022, however the number dropped to one in 2023 while a labradoodle was also given a notice the same year.

Information on what breeds of dog have most often been the subject of Dog Control Notices is not held centrally by the Scottish Government, however, the Scottish Government has helped with the creation of the database. 

This national database went live in February 2022 and brings together the records of all local authorities into a centralised database, that is accessible by local authorities and Police Scotland. 

The national database was created and is managed by the Improvement Service.

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