A blind dog who was tied to a pallet of bricks and left to die is searching for a very special new home.
Delphine the springer spaniel captured the hearts of the nation after being dumped in a remote lane in Maidstone, Kent in May.
The terrified dog had ear infections and cataracts in both eyes which left her almost blind. Thanks to donations from the public Delphine had specialist veterinary treatment and although her sight could not be restored she is recovering well from her ordeal and now needs a new home.
Christine Dooley, manager of RSPCA Leybourne Animal Centre, said: "As a blind dog Delphine needs a very special home.
"We have taught her to respond to voice commands to help her find her way around without bumping into things and her new owners will need to carry on with that training.”
"We have all got a soft spot for Delphine. She has got such a sweet nature and loves nothing better than laying on the grass in the sun. She is good with other dogs but is naturally very nervous of sudden and loud noises.
"Delphine needs a calm, quiet and uncluttered home with owners who have the time and patience to continue the work we have started as well as keeping up with her medical treatment."
Staff at RSPCA Leybourne have been helping Delphine (pictured above with animal care assistant Simon McArdle) find her feet by saying 'through' when going through doorways, 'care' when she has to squeeze through a tight space and 'up and down' to negotiate steps. Owners of blind pets can also use different smells and textured mats to help their pets find their way around homes and gardens.
Consistency is important to blind pets so the same RSPCA volunteer walks Delphine on the same route each day.
Christine added: "Delphine has been badly let down by her previous owner so deserves a home where she will be lavished with love and affection.
"There are going to be very few people who can dedicate the time Delphine needs to build up a bond with them but we we know those special new owners are out there somewhere."
Thanks to more than £3,600 in donations from the public Delphine was seen by specialists at the Animal Health Trust in Newmarket who discovered she had an underlying condition which caused her sight loss.
Despite having surgery to remove a cataract in her right eye Delphine's vision could be saved. She currently has eye drops five times a day, will need to see an eye specialist in future and may need more surgery in the future.
Christine added: "I still cannot understand how anyone could dump a dog and leave it to starve to death but the public's amazing response to Delphine's story has restored my faith in humankind.
"I'd like to thank everyone who donated to pay for Delphine's treatment and the Animal Health Trust who treated her at a discounted rate, now it's time for her to find her perfect match."
If you think you can offer Delphine a forever home contact RSPCA Leybourne on 0300 1230751.
Delphine, who is thought to be about six-years-old was rescued after a member of the public spotted her tied to a pallet of bricks in a remote country lane Hayle Place, near Cripple Street in Maidstone on May 12.
She was rescued by RSPCA Inspector Tina Nash who has been investigating but has been unable to find her previous owner. If anyone has any information about Delphine and how she came to be dumped in this way please call 0300 123 8018.
To help the RSPCA investigate cases like this text HELP to 78866 to give £3 (Text costs £3 + one standard network rate message)