Bloke sticks signs on dog’s harness so people don’t mistake him for XL Bully

A dog owner has put patches reading “I AM NOT AN XL BULLY” on his pooch’s harness so people will not mistake him for the deadly breed.

Former bodyguard Matt Stait, 52, placed them on his American bulldog, Eddie amid the spate of attacks. The dad-of-one, from Chepstow, South Wales, said: “People aren’t saying they are avoiding us on purpose but that is what’s happening.

“Even the people who know me, know the dog and would previously come over to stroke Eddie avoid us. I thought rather than have any confusion or stupid conversations I’d have the patch and hopefully it can create an understanding and I can explain the difference.

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“There’s been an amazing response from people who want them too. I should have ordered a couple of
hundred and sold them.”

Matt admits Eddie has guarding instincts but the right training means he does not cause trouble. He does not believe in banning dog breeds but insists more suitability checks should be in place when people try to buy them.

The news comes as dog attacks across the country are on the rise, with 24 deaths since the start of the Covid lockdown now confirmed.

The youngest victim of the attacks so far is Bella-Rae Birch, a 17-month old baby who was killed at by an American Bully XL in March 2021. Young Bella-Rae had been mauled to death by the beast at the family home in Blackbrook, St Helen's.

Her death is one of 24 fatal attacks in the UK over the last three years, with eight people so far this year being killed due to encounters with vicious dogs. Most recently, Ian Langley was attacked and killed by an XL Bully in Sunderland on Tuesday (October 3).

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