New Delhi: An attack on an 11-year-old girl by an American Bully XL dog in Birmingham has reignited a debate on whether the dog breed should be banned in UK. In the wake of the attack, British PM Rishi Sunak called for urgent work to “define and ban this breed.”
Taking to X (formerly Twitter), Sunak said, “It’s clear the American XL Bully dog is a danger to our communities. I’ve ordered urgent work to define and ban this breed so we can end these violent attacks and keep people safe.”
American Bullies are said to have originated in the United States back in 1980s. They are a cross between American pit bull terriers and American Staffordshire terriers. They were also crossed with other species to create an even more muscular breed.
According to a report by BBC, the United Kennel Club in the US said, “An American bully makes an excellent family dog. Despite its powerful appearance their demeanour is gentle and friendly. However, dog aggression is characteristic of this breed.”
The American Bully has four variations – standard, pocket, classic and XL.
According to BBC, Bully Watch, a group of London-based policy experts said the American Bully first appeared in UK “around 2014 or 2015”, and their numbers grew rapidly during Covid-19 pandemic.
“Lots of people started buying with the intention of breeding. There are models of co-ownership where you get the dog for free but the dealer gets to breed from it,” a Bully Watch spokesperson told BBC.
According to reports, most of the XL Bully dogs in UK were found to have descended from a “killer” inbred pet from the US. Research identified a prolific dog from Los Angeles, “Killer Kimbo”, that the XL Bully dogs are descended from. Kimbo, created through generations of inbred fighting dogs, is known for its size and strength.
According to BBC, American bullies were involved in several high-profile attacks.
A study published in Public Health journal showed there was a surge in deaths from dog attacks last year – 10, as compared to an average of three over the previous years.
“We’ve documented some pretty brutal attacks. The majority of people should not own this dog,” Bully Watch spokesperson told BBC.
A police report-based study conducted by BBC in March found there has been a 34% increase in dog attacks since 2018. However, over the same period, the number of dogs in UK was estimated to have risen by 15%.
(This story has not been edited by Thepearl staff and is auto-generated from an ABP Live RSS Feed.)