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Miracle behind Friends for Life winner

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A dog called Miracle rescued from the meat trade in Thailand has been recognised for changing the life of his six year old owner winning the Eukanuba Friends for Life 2015 Award.

Miracle was saved from the meat trade in Thailand after he was photographed nearly strangling himself as he tried to escape from the lorry he was being transported in.

The crossbreed was bought back to the UK where he became the dog and best friend to six-year-old Kyle Leask from Strathglass, Inverness. Kyle has cerebral palsy and autism and his mum Amanda Leask has credited their rescued pet with changing her severely disabled son’s life.

The special bond between the two was celebrated at Crufts when Miracle was chosen by 1000s of dog lovers and TV viewers in a public vote to win the Eukanuba Friends for Life award.

Story of Miracle rescue of hero hound

Miracle was on a shortlist of four pets vying for the top award at Crufts. The crossbreed was saved by Amanda Leask from a ship bound from Thailand to Vietnam, where he would have been served up for human consumption.

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Amanda said: “I believe in fate, and it feels like we saved Miracle’s life and he’s saved ours, it’s hard to describe the impact he’s made to our lives,” she said. “Miracle is a rescue dog, when he was found the people thought he was dead and to be here now, he’s such a special guy.

Spirited nature and empathy with young owner

Amanda added: “I’ve had a very tough past six years, my son Kyle is autistic and suffers from cerebral palsy, and it’s been touch and go and Miracle has been such an emotional support and they have a great connection.”

Miracle and Kyle were given a cheque for £1,500 from the Kennel Club Charitable Trust for their chosen charity.

“I feel absolutely ecstatic, it’s an unbelievable feeling and I’m slightly numb,” said Amanda. “It was quite an experience in the main arena, I tried not to focus on the crowd, I was holding back tears, it was incredibly emotional and when I was announced as the winner I didn’t know who to kiss first.”

Amanda has said she will divide the prize between charities involved with cerebral palsy, autism and animal welfare.

She added: “Miracle truly lives up to his name as it was only his spirited attempt to escape the truck that he had been herded on to, with 1,000 other dogs headed for slaughter, that led to his rescue."

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Published: 12:41, 16 March 2015 | Updated: 12:58, 16 March 2015