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Scotland’s XL bully owners urged to prepare for new rules
XL bully owners in Scotland will be required to ensure their dog is muzzled and on a lead when in a public place.
The first stage of safeguards will be introduced Friday.

XL bully owners in Scotland are being reminded to prepare for the deadline of the first stage of an XL bully ban in Scotland.

From Friday, 23 February 2024, XL bully owners in Scotland will be required to ensure their dog is muzzled and on a lead when in a public place.

This first stage of rules will also mean it is illegal to sell, advertise, gift or exchange XL bullies. Furthermore, it will be illegal to let dogs of this type stray.

Dog owners who are convicted of breaching these safeguards could face up to six months imprisonment, and/or a fine of up to £5,000.

This stage of rules is set to be followed by a second stage, effective 1 August 2024, which will make it an offence to own an XL bully without owning or having applied for an exemption certificate. The definition of an XL bully will be the same as is used by the UK government.

The Scottish government is due to release full details on how to apply for an exemption certificate, and the support available, in the coming weeks.

The first stage of legislation has been presented to the Scottish parliament for consideration, ahead of it coming into force on Friday. The Criminal Justice Committee is to take evidence from Siobhain Brown, the minister for victims and community safety, on Wednesday, 21 February.

Ms Brown said: “Whilst dog attacks remain a rare occurrence, where they do occur, they can have devastating consequences which is why safeguards must be introduced. We are doing so whilst ensuring we promote and support responsible ownership, and public safety as effectively as possible.

“The new regulations aim to protect public safety and are being introduced as a consequence of similar XL bully controls brought in by the UK government, which created an unacceptable risk of dogs being moved to Scotland from England and Wales.”

Image © Shutterstock

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Rabbit Awareness Week set to return this summer

News Story 1
 Rabbit Awareness Week (RAW) is returning this summer, running from 24-28 June 2024. The theme for this year will be 'Healthy Diet, Happy Bunnies'.

The focus on rabbits' diet comes after the most recent PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report report revealed that 42 per cent of veterinary professionals identified inappropriate diet as one of the five most important rabbit welfare issues that need to be address.

The campaign will include veterinary blogs, videos, and digital waiting room resources. Practices can sign up to receive updates about RAW. 

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News Shorts
CVS Group hit by cyber attack

CVS Group, which owns more than 450 veterinary practices in the UK, has been hit by a cyber attack.

In a statement, the group said the incident involved unauthorised external access to a limited number of its IT systems. As soon as the attack was discovered, the group took its IT systems temporarily offline, causing 'considerable operational disruption'.

It has warned that the security steps taken and ongoing plans to move its operational systems and IT infrastructure to the Cloud are likely to have an ongoing impact over a number of weeks.

Due to the risk that personal information was accessed, CVS has informed the Information Commissioner's Office. The company is working with third party consultants to investigate the incident.