A two year old dog has returned home tonight after being seized last month for ‘looking like a pitbull’ leaving his owners, Leonard Collins and Joanne Meadows devastated.

Photo Credit: Facebook/Save Hank

Hank was taken by Belfast City Council last month for assessment.

While the couple awaited the outcome of the council’s assessment, the kind-natured dog’s owners launched an online campaign which received global support from dog lovers and celebrities including DJ and TV presenter Dermot O’Leary, boxer Carl Frampton and dog behaviourist Victoria Stilwell, to bolster support and raise awareness about breed specific legislation.

But good news was just around the corner.

On 28th July the couple posted on the Save Hank facebook group announcing that “We have received word from BCC (Belfast City Council) that their assessment has concluded. They have deemed Hank to be “Pitbull Terrier type” but his “temperament is such that it does not pose a risk to the public”. The court hearing for the exemption order is set for next Tuesday, 2nd August.

“Effectively this means that Hank will almost certainly come home on Tuesday.”

Photo Credit: Facebook/Save Hank – Pictured above, Hank with owner Joanne

Hank’s exemption order was signed in court and his owner, Joanne, wept as her hopes of being reunited with her boy were realised. He is only the 12th dog to be assigned exemption status on the register since 2011.

Part of the exemption order means Hank has to be neutered, kept on a lead and muzzled in a public place, kept in sufficient conditions to prevent escape even when not in a public place and be made available to an authorised officer for inspection on demand.

Photo Credit: Facebook/Save Hank – Pictured above, Hank with owner Leonard 

Hank returned home today reunited with his owners, his home and everything he knows.

Share in more of their special moments and get involved in the campaign to fight BSL alongside Hank on Facebook at ‘Save Hank’.

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