Animal charities have warned that at least 246 XL bully dogs will be euthanised following the government's ban coming into force this year.

It comes as dogs homed with RSPCA, Blue Cross, Battersea Dogs and Cats Home, Dogs Trust and Mayhew could be destroyed, reports Sky News.

The ban will mean that XL bullies will not be able to be rehomed lawfully or sold from December 31.

Now the ban will mean rescue centres across England and Wales will have to euthanise XL bullies in their care unless they are rehomed before the end of 2023.

The government chose to enforce the ban following a number of attacks and deaths from the breed.

News Shopper: XL bullies will be banned from next year.XL bullies will be banned from next year. (Image: PA)

Hundreds of XL bully dogs could be destroyed by the end of 2023

According to Sky News, whilst rescuers can apply for exemptions to keep XL bullies, the dog would be forced to stay in kennels outside, which animal charities refuse to do for welfare concerns.

From January 1, owners of the breed will have to make sure their dogs wear muzzles and be on a lead when in public.

However, they have until February to apply for the exemption in order to continue to own the banned breed.

The Association of Dogs and Cats Homes told Sky News that more XL bullies could be put down next year if not rescued before the ban.

Which dog breeds are banned in the UK?

According to Blue Cross, it could charities £90,000 to destroy XL bullies with costs per animal between £350 and £400 due to their size.

The ban will also mean that XL bullies will have to be neutered, with some charities, including the Blue Cross, offering the service.

As a spokesperson, Becky Thwaites told Sky News: “If the timeframe for neutering is not extended we will be placed in a position where other preventative work such as vaccinations and routine neutering will have to be stopped."