A dad who paid £1,000 for a puppy watched in horror as it died in his arms just six hours after he bought it.
Heartbroken Richard Gray believes he and the tragic border collie called Bear were the victims of callous puppy farmers.
Mr Gray, 27, saw the dog advertised on Gumtree on Friday and contacted the seller to buy it, the Daily Record reports.
He said: “I’d been looking for a dog for ages for my little girl’s 10th birthday later this month.
“I’ve got severe epilepsy and can’t work so it took me a while to save up enough money.
“When I saw collies advertised in a video looking full of life, I contacted the seller who said she was based in Glasgow.
“I told her I’d manage to get to her with the money on Monday but she said she’d bring the pup to me. She said she wanted cash.”
Mr Gray, from Fife, claims when the woman – who he described as aged between 25 and 30 with an Irish accent – arrived at his home around 6pm, she “swiped the cash from my hands and practically threw the dog” at him before making a run for it back to her car.
He added: “I knew straight away there was a problem and when I got inside and tried to put the dog down, he couldn’t stand. He just flopped to the floor.”
He claims the puppy couldn’t focus and “didn’t look at me, but looked through me”.
He said: “It was utterly horrific. I tried feeding him through a wee tube but he locked his jaws. I phoned the vets but nobody could come out.
“I knew Bear was going to die so I made him as comfortable as I could and at 12.29am – just over six hours after I got him – he took his last breath and died in my arms.”
Mr Gray wrapped Bear up, put him in a box with a toy he’d bought for him, and took him to the vet the following morning to be cremated.
After, Kingdom Veterinary Centre in Glenrothes handed the case over to the Scottish SPCA to investigate.
A Scottish SPCA special investigations unit inspector, who cannot be named due to undercover work, went on to confirm that a report had been received about this incident.