Following a rise in attacks caused by XL Bully dog breeds across England and Wales, the government has added this breed to the list of dogs banned under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991. RHA Wales is encouraging its tenants who own XL Bully dogs to get their animals registered for exemption ahead of the January 31st 2024 deadline.

We know this can be worrying and upsetting time for owners whose dogs are affected by this legislation. As a landlord we have no intention of banning XL Bullies or acting against tenants solely based on owning such dogs. However, we do have a duty to inform and remind tenants of the new laws coming into effect and to ensure that dogs do not cause a nuisance to neighbours.


A suspected XL Bully breed type does not need to fit the physical description perfectly. The general impression is a large dog with a muscular body and blocky head, suggesting strength and power for its size. If your dog meets the minimum height measurements and a substantial number of the characteristics outlined in the link below, it could be considered an XL Bully breed type. This includes:

  • If it was not sold as an XL Bully
  • Cross breeds that look more like XL Bully dogs than any other type of dog

Please see the Governments website for more information: Check if a dog is an XL Bully – GOV.UK (



As of 31st December 2023, it is now illegal to sell, breed or give away an XL Bully dog, prohibited under the Dangerous Dog Act. Owners have until the 31st of January 2024 to exempt their dogs they suspect of being a XL Bully under the Government process or ensuring they are humanely euthanised.

It’s important to know that from 31 December 2023, XL Bully dogs must wear a muzzle and be kept on a lead when in a public place. It’s important to introduce your dog to a muzzle gradually and positively. There’s some really good guidance on how to do this from our friends at the Blue Cross. Click here: Blue Cross muzzle training advice.


  • 31 October 2023 — the Government announced that the American Bully XL type dog had been added to the banned breeds list in England and Wales.
  • 31 December 2023 — it became illegal to breed, sell, advertise, rehome, abandon or allow an American Bully XL type dog to stray.
  • 15 January 2024 — deadline to apply for a Certificate of Exemption by post.
  • 31 January 2024 — deadline to apply for a Certificate of Exemption online (12 noon).
  • 1 February 2024 — it will become illegal to own an XL bully type dog if you are not registered on the Index of Exempted dogs. Owners must also have third party public liability insurance in place, and dogs must be microchipped and neutered (unless they’re too young, see other dates below).
  • 31 March 2024 — deadline to have your dog microchipped and give the microchip number to Defra, if your dog was less than eight weeks old when you applied for a Certificate of Exemption.
  • 30 June 2024 — deadline to have your dog neutered and give evidence to Defra, if your dog was more than one year old on 31 January 2024.
  • 31 December 2024 — deadline to have your dog neutered and give evidence to Defra, if your dog was less than one year old on 31 January 2024.



You can now apply for a Certificate of Exemption to legally keep your dog and information about how to do this is on Government website. You will have until the end of February to do this. Owners will have to pay an application fee of £92.40.

As part of the process to exempt your dog, you will also need third-party liability insurance, this is insurance against your dog injuring other people and this is provided through Dogs Trust. Take a look at their website, click here: Companion Club | Dogs Trust.

  • Your dog must be microchipped (which is already a legal requirement).
  • Your dog will also need to be neutered.
  • If your dog is less than one year old on 31 January 2024, they must be neutered by 31 December 2024.
  • If your dog is older than one year old on 31 January 2024, they must be neutered by 30 June 2024.

We recommend that you arrange for your dog to be neutered as soon as possible to ensure that you meet these deadlines. Once your dog has been exempted you must adhere to the conditions otherwise you could be committing a criminal offence, and your dog could be seized. You must be able to show the Certificate of Exemption when asked by a police officer or a council dog warden either at the time or within 5 days.

RHA Wales will also need to have a copy of your Certificate of Exemption, if you are keeping your dog in one of our homes and we will be amending our Pet’s Policy to take account of these legislative changes.

Many of you will have been aware that a number of schools and buildings around Wales and the UK needed to close due to the presence of RAAC (reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete) being discovered.

In the last month there has been an increased focus on the potential for RAAC to be present in other buildings and some homes. RAAC is a lightweight material that has previously been used during the construction of some buildings. It is used mostly in flat roofing, but also in floors and walls.

Although the issues raised have been mainly identified in schools and other public sector buildings, we appreciate that some tenants may be concerned about their homes.
We want to reassure you that as your landlord, we always take a proactive approach to making sure your homes are well maintained and, most importantly, safe, and we do not believe there is any cause to be concerned. Due to the age and development style of our properties, it is highly unlikely that any of our homes would contain RAAC.
We carry out regular surveys and inspections on all our tenants’ homes which also assesses the condition of any concrete properties, and we haven’t found any issues to date and our surveyors are continuing to undertake inspections.


If you have any questions about RAAC or any aspects of safety in your home, then please get in touch with us.

We are here to help. 

Your health and well-being are our priority at RHA.

Further to recent Government advice and to prevent the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) we closed our offices in Compton Road, Tonypandy on Thursday 19th March until further notice.


RHA office closure & ongoing services: Coronavirus (COVID-19)

We want to reassure all our tenants and partners that we continue to operate all critical services, responding to telephone calls, emails and messages via our social media. Our staff are getting in touch with you regarding any individual appointments you may have arranged for the coming weeks.

If you are a tenant and need to speak to a member of our team, then please call our usual number 01443 424200.

We will continue to follow advice from the UK and Welsh Government and Public Health Wales, and we will keep you updated via our website and on our social media channels.



Please visit the below websites for further information and advice:


Following Government advice issued on Monday 23rd March, we have switched to an emergency repair service only.
Emergency repairs are those that are a priority to protect your health and safety or there is serious damage to your home

If you have a repair and you are unsure if it is an emergency or not, then please contact us on the number above or email: [email protected]

We will continue to monitor the situation and are working closely with all our contractors regarding this matter on a daily basis. As soon as we can, we will instruct the contractors to resume with routine repairs and orders.


A letter to all social housing tenants from the Welsh Government Minister for Housing and Local Government regarding support for those in with any financial difficulties as a result of Covid-19 can be viewed below:

Want to Get Involved?

Get in touch

Got a question? Get in touch! [email protected] 01443 424200 CF40 1BE