Big-hearted Stacey Solomon had adopted a new puppy named Teddy to join her family after her previous pet, Theo, died just days after Christmas. The Loose Women star was beaming from ear to ear after taking her new arrival home, but some followers wanted to address the difficulty they’d had themselves in rescuing a dog when there were young children in the family.
A clearly emotional Stacey had taken to social media to share the happy news with fans, gushing: “Welcome Home Teddy. Last night we rescued a dog. But today I’m not sure who has rescued who.”
She reported her dachshund Peanut hadn’t taken the news well and had felt “lonely” after his pal’s death, compelling her to get him a new companion.
“We miss you so much Theo,” she wrote. “I hope you’re looking down from heaven smiling, knowing that Peanut will no longer be so very lonely and that a doggy who really needed a family now has one. To the moon and back, always.”
She continued, while she hadn’t at first been certain whether she’d be going home with a new canine companion, she quickly realised she “couldn’t leave without him”.
“He was bred by somebody who was breeding dogs for sale and he wasn’t good enough for sale so they got rid of him,” she recounted.
“When we learned about him and then saw Peanut’s reaction to him there was no doubt in out mind that he was coming home.”
The majority of Stacey’s almost five million followers shared in her joy, with one writing: “Aww so nice that you have this platform and have rescued a dog. He’s absolutely gorgeous. Theo will be looking down loving that peanut will never be lonely. Well done giving Teddy the most loving home at pickle cottage.”
However, not everyone was equally delighted, with some commenting Stacey was allowed to adopt a potentially vulnerable rescue dog despite having young children at home – something they considered to be against protocol.
One follower wrote: “I just find it sad rescues don’t normally make the adoption process so easy. Families normally need older children etc due to not knowing a dog’s history etc. But for celebrities they break the rules… Why not give everyone the same treatment regardless of celebrity or not?”
Another argued: “I’d love to know how you do this. I had to go and get a puppy as no rescue would let me have a dog due to having a baby you have a toddler and a baby. I have two kids under six so couldn’t give a rescue dog a loving home after losing our beloved boxer to cancer last year.”
However the animal charity who had united Stacey with her dream pet strenuously denied any suggestion she had been given preferential treatment due to her celebrity status.
The charity, Pro Dogs Direct, released a statement in which they explained Teddy was excellent with young children.
“We treat each dog as an individual,” they clarified. “Lots of our dogs, sadly the majority, cannot be homed with young children because of their past or lack of information about their past.
“[However] this lad is great with children, he has a fab temperament and is now in a great home.”
The statement continued: “We know that it is difficult when you have children, and we wish all of our dogs could be homed with children. They can’t but those that can we will state and home with children if it is the right home for the dog.
“Each dog is individual and each of our applicants are too. Please be kind we are all wanting the same thing and that is to see all animals safe and loved.
“Yes we have re homed one of our dogs to @staceysolomon and her family. Yes she followed our adoption process, yes she completed an application form, yes her home was vetted, and no she did not adopt a dog in 24hours.
“It is so very sad that the minority cannot be happy that a rescue dog has found a great home where he will be loved and looked after – we couldn’t be happier for Teddy and his new family.
“Please be happy and be kind and if you cannot then please be quiet – Thank you to all who are happy for Teddy.”
32-year-old Stacey, who has revealed she will not be having any further children, feels with red cocker spaniel Teddy in tow, her family is now complete.