UPDATE: “RSPCA satisfied” with Hatton Country World’s care of sheepdog and puppies

Photo from Google Street View.
Photo from Google Street View.

The RSPCA have been said to be “satisfied” with the care that a farm park was providing for sheepdog and her puppies after a picture caused social media backlash.

Hatton County World, which is in Hatton near Warwick, posted a photo on Facebook over the weekend of a sheepdog called Nell, who recently became a mum, with the puppies and with Nell also tethered.

Members of the public took to social media to air concerns over the sheepdog being tied up and also over the puppies being in the public view at the park.

The photo and Facebook status have since been deleted.

The staff at the farm park issued two statements on Facebook over the weekend responding to the backlash on social media.

Their first statement said: “In response to our post yesterday regarding Nell and the Puppies:

“Nell the dog and pups have been with us since Wednesday. The pups are doing extremely well and Mum is enjoying the attention from the staff.

“Nell is very valuable and new to the environment hence why she is tethered at the current time, however she has access to food water and her pups.

“She is walked many times through out the day for exercise and to get used to her new surroundings, she is a working sheep dog here at Hatton and this is her second litter.

“We realise yesterday’s post was not the best picture for Facebook but would like to ensure everyone that animal welfare is paramount in all areas of being a working farm and children’s farm.

“We are constantly assessed by veterinary professionals and all members of staff working with our animals are fully trained with years of experience.”

Around half an hour later they issued their second response, which said: “We would like to reiterate that Nell and her pups are being well cared for.

“Whilst she has been tethered, it has been for her own safety and we would like to assure everyone that she has full access to her pups at all times.

“However, due to public reaction and feeling we are currently reviewing the situation with a view to moving Nell and her pups away from the public environment.

“We are a working farm and have baby animals on display all year round including piglets, chick and lambs, as do other farm parks.”

A spokesperson from Hatton Country World has released another statement today (Monday).

They said: “On Friday we posted a picture on Facebook to welcome the latest arrivals to our farm, sheepdog Nell and her puppies.

“Nell was just getting used to her new environment so we had put her on a lead that was long enough for her to cuddle up with the pups but prevented her from jumping out of her pen .

“Unfortunately, the angle of the posted photo made it look as if she could not get to her pups - and understandably this upset a number of people.

“The RSPCA was fully satisfied that Nell and the puppies was receiving all the care and attention they deserved , and , having settled in, Nell is no longer on a lead.”