By EMILY ALLEN
A dog's life: Lorraine Booth, 36, with her dog Weber who she paid £2,000 to have flown back to her home in Bristol
When they met on a Caribbean beach it was love at first sight - and when the holiday was over, nothing was going to keep them apart.
And finally Weber the black Labrador cross has been reunited with his loving new owners, 4,000 miles from his old home.
Paul Booth, 43, and wife Lorraine, 36, rescued the dog after spotting her wandering across a beach in Antigua as it hunted for scraps.
They decided to adopt the malnourished animal and give her a permanent home back in Britain.
Love at first sight: Lorraine Booth when she met the malnourished dog on holiday in Antigua in January this year
Now after paying £2,000 and waiting for vet checks to be completed and the six-month quarantine period to be over, the couple have been reunited with their dog.
She bounded into their arms after stepping off a long-haul flight from the Caribbean island to Gatwick Airport last week.
Mrs Booth said: 'It feels great to finally have her here. She looks exactly the same as before, but is now super-healthy.
'We fell in love with her after she started following us around. In the end we just could not leave her there.
'I think it is fate that led us to her and now she is settling in so well here.'
The couple, from Cotham, Bristol, headed to Antigua's idyllic Cocobay resort for a two-week holiday in January this year.
Woman's best friend: The couple waited for 10 months while the pet was in quarantine and had all the relevent vet checks before flying to England
They were living in a hut on a stretch of the island's scenic beach when they first noticed the black dog wandering the sands.
Mrs Booth, who owns retro sweet shop Fizzy Lips in Bristol's Broadmead shopping centre with her husband, said: 'We were in a resort where we had a hut on the beach.
'My husband went running on the beach in the morning, near an unpopulated wasteland, and this little dog came out and ran over to him.
'He stopped and rubbed its nose and patted it, and she was all patchy and malnourished, and she had mange.
'But she followed him up the beach and ran with him and when he got back to the hut he said to me, 'you have got to come and see this dog'.'
The couple befriended the her and she began follow them around and they in turn would feed her.
Saved: Weber is enjoying her new life in Bristol and loves running in the park
Mrs Booth said: 'We were there two weeks and we went to see her every day.
'She would come to see us and sit outside our hut to wait for us, and she had such a lovely personality.
'She was so thin and slept on the beach with no food, water or companions, either canine or human. It was very sad.
'How she got there no one will ever know, but she was not likely to survive for long.
'Despite, this she seemed so delighted to have any attention.
'The problem in Antigua with stray dogs is very bad, and the few people over there who are trying to educate people, rescue and re-home dogs are fighting an uphill battle.'
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
By EMILY ALLEN