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'Joseph the dog' found tied up and alone on Christmas Eve

Credit: RSPCA

A dog that was found tied up and abandoned in Newcastle-upon-Tyne on Christmas Eve has been given some festive cheer after being taken in by the RSPCA.

Staffy cross 'Joseph', as he has been nicknamed by the staff at the RSPCA’s Felledge Animal Centre, was cold and nervous when he was found tied to a lamppost on Benfield Road at around 9pm.

Joseph is now being cared for at the RSPCA centre, near Chester-le-Street, after he was taken there by inspector Suzanne Edgar.

Staff treated the brindle bull terrier to Christmas lunch, after he was left with nothing but his collar and lead.

When the caller found him he was very understandably nervous, but he’s very friendly.

It wasn’t raining but, being Newcastle, it was very cold. It was very windy and the temperature was down to around two degrees.

An RSPCA animal collection officer took him to a vet where he spent the night, before I took him to Felledge Animal Centre on Christmas Day.

There are some shops near to where he was found and the person who spotted Joseph made enquiries at those, as well as the nearby pub and off-licence, but nobody knew anything about him.

Someone has presumably tied him to the lamppost on purpose and either dumped him, or they simply forgot about him.

It is so sad to think of a dog being abandoned at any time of year, but especially at Christmas when most people are enjoying themselves with their friends, family and pets.

I’m just so grateful to the person who found him and called us because otherwise Joseph could have been left out all night. Thankfully the staff at Felledge have made sure he’s been given plenty of Christmas treats.”

– Inspector Edgar, RSPCA

Joseph was not microchipped and has no form of identification on his collar, but is in reasonable health. He is thought to be about five-years-old.

Anyone with any information about who Jospeh belongs to or who left him can contact inspector Edgar by calling the RSPCA’s inspectorate appeal line on 0300 123 8018.

Festive flab-fighting in County Durham

Members of CrossFit DL2 in Darlington brought festive fancy dress to their workout, cramming-in crunches on Christmas Eve.

Millions of Britons will rush to the gym in January, after over-indulging this Christmas.

A traditional Christmas Dinner with all the trimmings is likely to contain more than 1500 calories. The average daily allowance is 2000 for women and 2500 for men but the festive season is expected to see many people consume more than double that.

Credit: Callum Campbell
Credit: Callum Campbell
Credit: Callum Campbell
Credit: Callum Campbell
Credit: Callum Campbell

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Penguin orphans celebrate 1st birthday

Rico and Skipper with surrogate dad Todd German. Credit: Scarborough Sea Life Sanctuary.

Humboldt penguin chicks Rico and Skipper were hand-reared by Scarborough Sea Life Sanctuary's senior aquarist Todd German, after they were abandoned by their parents.

Now a year later, things have p-p-p-picked up for the pair of brothers, who are healthy and apparently happy living in a colony of twenty penguins.

A fishy birthday treat for Rico. Credit: Scarborough Sea Life Sanctuary.

“For their first few weeks I had to feed them a special fish soup six times every day with the aid of a syringe. “They came home with me every night for nearly two months so they could have their last feed at 10pm. We developed a really close bond and even though they’ve long since been assimilated into our 20-strong Humboldt penguin colony, they rush straight over to greet me when I enter the enclosure.”

– Todd German, Scarborough Sea Life Sanctuary

Having been hand-reared, Rico and Skipper have no fear of humans and have become popular attractions at the Sanctuary.

Santa Ride on Teesside - more pictures

Here are some more pictures of today's Santa Ride on Teesside - to rise money for the Children's Hospice Zoe's Place.

Organised by the motorcycle group Boundary 500 - it is an annual event to raise money for local charities.

This year there were 225 Santas - and people dressed on other festive costumes - on 160 bikes.

Quite a site as they head out from Thornaby. Credit: Jim Forsyth
Ready Teddy....Go! Credit: Jim Forsyth
Raising funds for Zoe's Place, and raising smiles. Credit: Jim Forsyth
More Santas. Credit: Jim Forsyth
This one really IS Santa - check out the beard! Credit: Jim Forsyth
Paws for thought - is he at the right event? Credit: Jim Forsyth
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