Thérèse Coffey has revealed she has received death threats over the process of banning XL Bully dogs.

The Suffolk Coastal MP started the process of banning the dog breed in her role as Environment Secretary, before stepping down on November 13. 

It was announced in September by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak that legislation would be brought into ban the XL Bullies after a spate of attacks across the country. 

East Anglian Daily Times: The Suffolk Coastal MP says she has received death threats over the banThe Suffolk Coastal MP says she has received death threats over the ban (Image: PA)

During a debate focused on petitions relating to the ban, the MP spoke of the death threats she had received, and said it was not a "knee-jerk" reaction. 

“I must admit I’ve had several death threats about this particular legislation that has been brought into place and I’m conscious it is driving strong emotions," said the Suffolk Coastal MP.

“The reality was that there were simply too many attacks happening and the proportion of attacks happening by XL bully-type dogs was considerably higher than others.

“The Government took an approach that would allow time for people to rehome, if they feel they could not keep an XL bully-type dog,” Dr Coffey said.

“But also, very different to what has happened more recently when people have a pit bull and similar, they can still apply to get a certificate to join the Index of Exempted Dogs."

New legislation is set to be introduced from December 31, making it illegal to advertise, exchange, rehome, abandon or allow the dog breed to stray. 

On February 1, 2024, it will become illegal to own an XL Bully unless it is on an exemption list. 

Dr Coffey added: "If we think about an adult XL bully dog, we are talking about something that is about 70 kilos - these are big dogs. 

“These really have a lot of strength and frankly, the only way to unlock their jaws once they latch on to somebody is to basically choke it. Not kick it in the head or anything like that — that will make it grab on even tighter."