Victory for Nelson, Ulster's one-eyed Husky hero dog
Nelson the one-eyed husky was celebrating victory last night after more than 3,000 big-hearted Ulster dog lovers voted him Northern Ireland's Pet Hero.
Vets4Pets launched the Pet Hero competition to give dog owners a chance to shine the spotlight on their remarkable pets.
The competition saw nine finalists nominated across Northern Ireland. Honey the Assistance Dog, a retriever from Ballymena came second, while Ara, a Labrador from the Lisburn area, came third.
Nelson's owner, Tracey McCaughey from Belfast, said: "We're so happy Nelson has won and we want to thank everyone who voted for him.
"He's a brilliant pet, who brings us so much joy.
"We knew we wanted to adopt another rescue dog and asked our local Vets4Pets vet to keep us in mind. It was just before Christmas 2015 when MT got in touch and told us about Nelson, who'd been brought in after he was abandoned with horrendous injuries to his left eye."
Fortunately, Nelson had a successful operation with a quick recovery, which meant he was able to be re-homed shortly after with Tracey and her husband Paul.
Tracey explains: "We met Nelson on the Monday and knew then we had to have him in our lives.
"We brought him home the following Wednesday. We had concerns about how he would cope with one eye and moving into a new home, but he settled in right away and is one of the kindest, loving dogs we have ever met; he takes everything in his stride.
"Nelson looks like he is constantly winking - which adds to his appeal and he has never let his disability slow him down, which is why we nominated him for Pet Hero."