New forever home for Alsatian dog Bella rescued from a river with a stone tied to her neck

Bella the Alsatian who was rescued from drowning in the River Trent has a new home.

She was pulled to safety by walkers after she was spotted in the icy river.

A large rock had been tied around her neck before she was thrown in.

After more than 15 months of care at a vets and RSPCA centre Bella has now been placed with a couple – Maggie Mellish and Charlie Douglas, of South Derbyshire.

The retired pair are a perfect match for Bella, aged 11.

Maggie said: “We have had three Shepherd-type dogs over the last 30 years and really love them.

“We lost our rescue dog Tia/Luna two years ago and my daughter’s dog Flame, this year. We did really miss them.

“Then we saw Bella’s story and the fact she needed a home so my daughter, Clare, encouraged us to apply for her.

Charlie added: “We were horrified by what happened to Bella and when we came to see her, we realised what a great personality she has and she really is perfect

Charlene Latham, 32, formerly of Newark, was sentenced to a 12-month community order last month after she pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to Bella by trying to drown her.

As well as a 12-month community order she was fined £80, ordered to pay £200 costs and a £32 victim surcharge.

She was also disqualified from keeping dogs for three years.

About the Author

Philip Braund spent 16 years at the Daily Mirror as a reporter and news editor before moving to ITV. He was the series producer of the ground-breaking investigation programme The Cook Report, Managing Editor at ITV’s Millbank Studios, and Head of News at ITV Central. He has won national and regional Royal Television Society awards for documentaries.