Mum whose son, 10, was killed by XL Bully dog says Government must stop 'plague of dog attacks'
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A mum whose child was killed by an XL Bully dog has slammed the Government for failing to act after another dog attack left three people injured in Birmingham.
Emma Whitfield's son Jack Lis was mauled to death by an XL Bully almost two years ago.
She was forced to identify 10-year-old Jack by his shoe after the attack.
Emma urges the Government to act now to stop the 'plague of dog attacks'.
Earlier this week, Home Secretary Suella Braverman called for 'urgent advice' about banning the breed of dog after one ran amok and injured three people – including an 11-year-old girl – in Birmingham.
Emma says she is furious the Home Secretary has only just woken up to the 'crazy' number of dog attacks in the UK, blasting the Government's failure to act sooner.
"Where were you when my son was killed?" she asks.
Her son Jack suffered fatal injuries whilst at a friend's house in Caerphilly, South Wales in November 2021 when a seven stone XL Bully called Beast attacked him.
She stresses that politicians must 'go deeper' than just banning the XL Bully breed and need to target their 'backyard breeders' and 'thuggish' owners too.
“To stop this plague of dog attacks, banning XL Bullies is not enough - we have to go further, we have to go deeper. They can’t just stop there. As soon as they say it’s banned then people are just going to move onto something else," she says.
“Please don’t stop at just banning the bully because action is also urgently needed against the backyard breeders and the dangerous and irresponsible owners. The ones who are abusing the dogs, those over breeding, the ones just turning out litter after litter for money with no concerns for the dogs’ welfare.
“I think banning the XL Bully would have to be the first step in changing the law but they have to tackle the backyard breeders too. It is crucial they look at tackling the whole picture - not just not part of it.”
There have been 17 fatal dog attacks in the UK since Emma's son was killed in 2021. Ten are believed to be bully-type dogs.
Reacting to a TikTok video of an XL Bully terrorising members of the public at a carwash in Birmingham, the Home Secretary described them as a 'clear and lethal danger' to children.
But Emma claims the Government are not doing enough to stop the violent breed.
“It’s crazy how this video has gone viral and now politicians are coming out of the woodwork saying how bad it is. Where were you when my son was killed?” she asked. “The attack on my son plays over in my head day in and day out. Where were you when other innocent people were killed? Where were you when I was at Parliament asking for change? Nowhere. If you’re going to do something please do it."
The Government's reaction has left Emma frustrated.
"Action is needed not talk. They need to stop pussy-footing around. It’s frustrating that it has taken this long for them to say something where before now they’ve kept pretty quiet.
“I know they expressed condolences to me but condolences mean nothing if they are not going to step up and do something. Stop pushing it to one side and think the problem is going to go away because it’s only going to get worse.”