18 Dog Breeds You Can’t Own In Many Parts Of The World

Written By Jill Taylor

Dogs can change lives for the better, but not every breed is popular, or legal, in every part of the world. Some dogs are outlawed because they’re too dangerous, while others are restricted due to congenital issues. Here are 18 dog breeds that are forbidden in many places.

American XL Bully

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According to the BBC, American XL Bullies caused over 20 deaths in Britain between 2021 and 2023. It’s no surprise then, that the breed is now banned in the U.K. Turkey, Germany, Ireland, and the United Arab Emirates also restrict American XL Bullies because of the danger they pose.

Fila Brasileiro

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This South American breed has a reputation for brutality – historically, they were used to catch enslaved people who tried to escape Brazil’s plantations. They’re considered dangerous in many countries, such as Fiji and Turkey. Some regions block the entry of Fila Brasileiro dogs, while others call for males to be neutered.


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The Tosa originated in Japan as a fighting dog. Their great strength means that they’re regulated or banned in over 20 countries, including France, Norway, and Romania. However, the Tosa is welcome in South Korea, as after a fashion, it’s one of the most commonly eaten dog meats in the country.

Dogo Argentino

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The Dogo Argentino comes from Argentina, and plenty of countries wish that it had stayed there. The breed is considered dangerous in the U.K. and is regulated in half a dozen other countries, such as Austria and Hong Kong. Dogo Argentinos can even take down pumas, so it’s no wonder they’re considered a threat.

American Pitt Bull Terrier

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Legislation clamping down on American Pitt Bulls remains controversial, with some dog lovers claiming that the breed is just misunderstood. But it’s hard to argue with statistics – the National Post reveals that dog bite reports dropped when the breed was banned in Ontario, Canada. Other countries take the same approach, including much of Europe.

English Bull Terrier

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Like its relative in the U.S., the English Bull Terrier is considered a threat to public safety. While they do behave when properly trained, their stubborn attitude and previous use in blood sports continue to raise eyebrows. They’re now restricted in Germany, Spain, Switzerland, and a number of other European countries.


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Ukraine has restrictions on over 80 dog breeds, but the country’s caution towards the Bullmastiff is more than justified. Numerous other places, including Ireland and Belarus, restrict this English breed, and with good reason – Bullmastiffs can be very dangerous when somebody provokes them.


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The Bandog is appropriately named as it’s banned in several countries. India, Romania, and Switzerland are among those that restrict the dog, as it can pose a danger to other canines if not properly trained. A good owner can straighten a Bandog out, but many places aren’t willing to take that risk.


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The Rottweiler is considered dangerous both in Washington and throughout the world.  Brazil limits its imports and encourages sterilization, while other countries, like Poland, also restrict this aggressive breed. Despite their danger, Rottweilers aren’t without their fans – in 2022, the American Kennel Club ranked them as the seventh most popular breed in the U.S.

Dogo Canario

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The Dogo Canario comes from the Canary Islands, where it was used to herd cattle and fight other dogs. With such a violent history, it makes sense for other countries to be careful. Australia, Belarus, and Italy have all banned the Dogo Canario, while Romania requires the breed to wear a muzzle.

Doberman Pinscher

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Doberman Pinschers have a reputation for aggressive behavior, partly due to their powerful bites. Although this aggression is usually directed towards strangers rather than owners, many countries control the Doberman Pinscher, including Ukraine, the U.S., and Ireland. However, many Doberman owners insist that their pets are safe – it’s all a matter of training.


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These fearsome dogs were once used to hunt leopards, so it’s easy to understand why the breed is banned in France, Bermuda, and Qatar, among other countries. Although well-trained Boerboels are sometimes used as therapy dogs, they’re dangerous without proper guidance, and inexperienced owners often bite off more than they can chew.

Staffordshire Bull Terrier

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The Staffordshire Bull Terrier (or Staffy) was originally bred in England for blood sports like bear baiting. Recent efforts to restrict the breed in the U.K. have failed, however, Israel, Spain, and Ireland have managed to put restrictions in place for the Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

Neapolitan Mastiffs

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The massive Neopolitan Mastiff is restricted in parts of the U.S. and in Singapore. They’re also banned in India, with The Times of India mentioning the danger they pose to children and adults. You don’t want to get on the wrong side of these Italian heavyweights!

Cane Corso

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Italy is known for its pizza, pasta, and dangerous dogs. The same characteristics that make the Cane Corso a great guard dog can also make it a threat, especially when paired with an inexperienced trainer. As a result, this willful canine is restricted in several places, including Montenegro, Ireland, and Scotland.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

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Some dogs are banned because they’re dangerous, but the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is banned in Norway for a very different reason. Many suffer from neurological issues, and Norwegians decided to restrict the breed for quality-of-life reasons. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are adorable, but they’re too unhealthy to live happily ever after.

Akita Inu

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Akita Inus may be cute, but many countries take a strong stance against these territorial terrors. Spain, Ireland, and Bermuda all have restrictions around the Akita Inu, and with good reason – these fluffy canines are strong enough to hunt bears in their native Japan, so humans had better be on their guard.

Belgian Malinois

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The beautiful Belgian Malinois faces restrictions around the world due to fears about the breed’s potentially dangerous streak. Special permits are required in Canada and Denmark, while restrictions on imports are in place in Bermuda and Switzerland. The Belgian Malinois might not look deadly, but it never hurts to be careful!

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