A dog that was days away from being put down is running rings round other pets as an agility champion.
Bella the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel suffered fear aggression issues when she came into the care of Charlotte-Louise Yeaman two and a half years ago.
However, her new owner’s faith in the pint-sized pup has pushed her to become a star in the fast-paced world of agility a canine activity which sees dogs compete to complete an obstacle course in the fastest time.
Charlotte-Louise, who lives near Kinross, was ordered by her father to work on the four-year-old pet’s issues after the tiny dog lunged for some children.
“I got her when she was a year and half,” she said. “She wasn’t exactly a rescue as I got her from a breeder but she was very violent and attacked me and my other dogs when I first got her.
“I don’t know what went on in her first home. You could tell she was a good dog, she’d just been treated badly.
“We have a coal fire and even if you lifted a log to put it in she thought she was going to get belted, so she’d start biting.
“She was very aggressive on a lead as she’d never been on one before. We were quite close to getting her put down because she was just horrific.
“We were walking along a beach one day and I had her on a lead. Two kids walked past and she started snarling and my dad said I had two weeks to sort her or she was getting put down.
“I calmed her down a lot in two weeks but it took a while to fully sort. Now you wouldn’t even know that she’d been like that it’s amazing.”
The 18-year-old said she was pleased with how far her pet had come in the years since.
She said: “I’d done agility with my other dog and I wanted to do it with her but she had a lot of problems which needed to be overcome before I got near that stage with her.
“I’m lucky as I have a lot of my own equipment so I could teach her basics but I didn’t take her down the club until I knew she wasn’t going to rip a dog or a person apart.
“In our first year she was brilliant and went up a grade in every show she was at. In 2015 she went up to grade 7, which is championship, she was at Crufts and we were champions in the team event at the World Junior Agility Championships.”
Charlotte-Louise and Bella are now gearing up to compete at Crufts for the second time in March.