Police seized four dogs in Winscombe after reports of XL bully incident

FOUR dogs – believed to be XL bullies – were seized from an address in Somerset on Saturday (June 22).

The incident unfolded at an address in Winscombe, after police said there were “reports of an incident … involving suspected XL bully dogs”.

Officers – including dog handlers – descended on the scene and seized four dogs.

An Avon & Somerset Police spokesperson later confirmed one of the dogs was identified as an American bulldog and returned to the owners, with investigations into the breed of the other three continuing.

They said the large police presence at the address was due to police being required to “have two dog handlers and one van per dog”.

“We are not investigating anyone else or any other crimes in relation to our attendance,” they said. “Reports of potentially dangerous dogs in the community are increasing.

“These are not simply limited to XL bully breeds, any breed of dog can be dangerous, or considered dangerously out of control. No matter how big or small it might be.

“These investigations are complex, emotive, and difficult for everyone involved.

“Many of our officers are dog owners and love animals, none of us wants to have to seize a dog from a family, we know and understand how big an impact this has. But unfortunately, we do have to sometimes.

“To avoid such a requirement, we are pleading with all dog owners, no matter what dog you own – big or small – old or young – to take responsibility for your four-legged family members.

“It is not okay to let your dog off the lead if it is going to run over to someone else or their dogs, it is not okay if your dog is aggressive or untrained to leave it loose in the community.

“You must do all you can to avoid conflict and tension with the people that you live alongside. Get the right equipment, see a trainer, and make it safe.

“We take no pleasure in seizing dogs. So please do all you can to avoid an incident in the first place.”

Officers were in Winscombe over the weekend to answer questions and concerns in the area, they said, after a “challenging, emotive and likely traumatic” incident.

“We are also working closely with the owner in question,” they added. “We want to thank all the community for their help and support.”

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