A MATTED dog who was found living in "hellish" conditions at a home on the Wiltshire and Hampshire border last year has gone on to take top place in a dog competition.

Hobbit was rescued with 21 other dogs by RSPCA inspectors in March after the charity received complaints about the condition they were living in.

RSPCA inspector Miranda Albison, who led the investigation, said: “The dogs were living in makeshift kennels and runs in the garden and inside the house.

“There were lots of dogs crammed into rooms and pens, they were all absolutely filthy with matted coats.

“The conditions were absolutely hellish. I can’t begin to describe how awful the smell was.”

Twenty-two Eurasiers - or Eurasian dogs, part of the Spitz family - were seized. Three, including Hobbit, went to Bath Cats and Dogs Home, an RSPCA branch.

Head of fundraising and communications, Rachel Jones, said: “When Hobbit arrived she was matted, covered in faeces and underweight with a body score of just two out of five.

“We tried to brush and clip her coat but, on our first attempt she got so stressed that we have to stop.

“We eventually had to sedate her and shave a lot of her coat as it was in such a terrible state.”

Staff spent three months rehabilitating Hobbit and teaching her to trust people again.

In June, she was rehomed with Anna and Mark Abram from Chippenham and has been enjoying plenty of day trips. She even picked up first prize in competition.

Anna said: “Hobbit is so adorable and loving, she has learned so much in the few months we have had her.

“She has lots of doggy and human friends now, everywhere we go people want to take pictures and ask about her.

“During the holidays we went out for lots of day trips, she loves the beach and will go paddling in the water. We also took her to a festival where there was a dog competition - and she won first prize.”