Gentle dog breed has killed 3 people in a year – including defenceless baby

The "perfect family dog" with "extraordinary kind heartedness" is under the spotlight.

American Bully XLs may look scary, breeders say, but they continue to be highly recommended for their gentle temperament.

The beloved pooches are often considered an additional family member – but this particular breed has been responsible for three horrific deaths in Britain in the past year.

Britain was rocked by yet another death last week, when Joanne Robinson, 43, was horrifically mauled by her American Bully XL named Rocco, who her family said was a "good dog."

The mum-of-two was subjected to a grisly attack in South Yorkshire after it "snapped" when she returned home from a night out on Friday (July 15).

READ MORE ' No trouble' pet 'turned mad in heatwave' and pinned down mum with its killer jaws

Rocco savagely mauled Joanne's partner, Jamie Stead, as he tried to save her, which left him with severe injuries to his face, hands and chest.

Earlier this year, 17-month-old Bella-Rae Birch was brutally killed by an American Bully XL, just one week after her family had purchased the canine.

The toddler fell victim to the devastating attack inside her home in St Helen's, Merseyside, and succumbed to her injuries in hospital.

Her mother Treysharn paid tribute to her "gorgeous blue-eyed baby girl" following the bloodied ambush on March 21.

In a heartbreaking statement issued by Merseyside Police, Bella-Rae's family said: "As a family we would like to thank the community for their support.

"We would ask that we are now allowed some space and time to try and come to terms with the tragic loss of our much-loved Bella-Rae. She will be sadly missed but never forgotten."

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Last month, a pair in Wales were jailed after a ten-year-old was tragically ripped into by the breed which was named "Beast."

Brandon Hayden and Amy Salter were sentenced at Cardiff Crown Court after Jack Lis was mauled to death near to where he lived on a council estate.

He was attacked shortly after he had left school and was invited to the house on November 8, 2021.

The court heard that when Jack stroked the dog's head, it jumped up and him and then pushed him to the ground where he sustained "unsurvivable" injuries to the head and neck.

It was reported that Beast had previously been involved in attacks and had left two members of the public injured just days before he killed Jack.

Hayden, who owned the dog, and Salter, who was in charge of the dog at her house, as his friend, both plead guilty following the boy's death.

They were jailed for three years after they admitted to owning or being in charge of a dangerously out-of-control dog.

Jack's mother Emma Whitfield accused Hayden of displaying "no remorse or respect" for her son, reports BBC.

She said: "This animal was not a family pet… it was made to be this way and there was absolutely no intent on anyone calming it from the moment it was born."

"More needs to be done regarding the law to prevent these types of owners and to prevent this situation from happening again."

The US United Kennel Club recognised the American Bully as a breed in 2013. The American Bully XL is still legal in the UK.

The 'XL' is cited in response to the dog's size category, which sits among three others named pocket, standard and classic, reports The Sun.

It has been reported that the XL tends to measure at 33-50cm in height, and weighs in at 20-60kg.

Joanne's family said Rocco was "bigger than a lion" and compared his size to a "small horse" – they believe he turned aggressive due to the "extreme heat" which has swept the UK.

The current breeds to be banned in the UK are; Pitbull Terrier, Dogo Argentino, Japanese Tosa and Fila Brasileiro.

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