A neglected dog found in Trowbridge was thought to be fully-grown, but is actually little older than a puppy.

Bath Cats and Dogs Home rescued the German Shepherd in September when she was found in a very poor state.

This led to rescuers believing Bellatrix to be a much older dog. After vet treatment and lots of love she is now back to full health. After two months of care they were surprised to find she really is just a baby and has only just turned one year old.

She has been stabilised by the vet team after being very unwell. She had blood tests to check for deficiencies and she needs vitamin supplements and even a special diet for gastrointestinal disease.

Since being cared for at the home she has put on about a stone.

The charity has just launched its winter appeal, bringing attention to cases like Bellatrix. It is focusing on the challenges of animals coming into the home with chronic medical conditions, sometimes caused by neglect or problems such as a lack of socialisation.

Chief executive Rachel Jones said: “Bellatrix is such a fantastic example of how we can totally transform an animal’s life. Bella is such a friendly, clever girl who has lots of affection to give. She will make a terrific pet for the right person.

Rachel added: “Unfortunately, we are now starting to see the less obvious effects of the pandemic.

“With so many people facing unprecedented challenges, pet owners were often unable to travel to vets, as well as the past year and a half having a negative impact on many people’s personal wellbeing.”