A FAMILY is heartbroken after their dog died while allegedly left in a glass conservatory during the heatwave by a pet-sitting service.

Bulldog Teddie, aged 21 months, was left overnight by owner Nikki Morton, of Caerphilly, at the £28-a-day home dog-boarder she found recommended online.

But she was horrified to get a call the next day to say:

"Your dog is dead."

Police and the dog-sitting company are investigating the tragedy after Ms Morton, 49, alleged her pet was kept in the conservatory in the boarder's

Ms Morton said: "I am angry and absolutely heartbroken because it was so avoidable.

"The conservatory was boiling when we went there that day. It was 27 degrees outside and hotter in there."

Barry And District News:

Nikki found the sitter in Barry, 20 miles from her Caerphilly home, on the dog-sitting service Rover - a third party site where you can book pet-sitting services.

The Morton family have a two-week holiday in Jamaica booked for later this year - and wanted to arrange a couple of overnight stays for Teddie to get used to it.

Ms Morton said: "We found a sitter who sounded like a really nice lady with five-star reviews and everyone raving about her."

She said she was surprised to learn five other dogs were staying with the sitter at the same time.

Teddie was left in the home at around 6pm but the sitter then called her at 7.48am the next day and said: "The dog is dead."

Ms Morton said:

"I asked where he'd been sleeping and she said: 'Well, the conservatory.'

"Why would you leave a dog in a glass box in extreme weather conditions?

"I was sobbing and had to just put the phone down.'"

Barry And District News:

Nikki and husband Glenn went to collect her pet's body that morning and saw the conservatory door was open.

She said: "My dog was dead on the floor and she had thrown a quilted blanket over him.

"He was in almost full rigor mortis. The smell was horrendous.

"It's a fully glass conservatory with no blinds. I'm hanging on to the thought that he didn't suffer in the conservatory.

"My house feels empty and my heart feels empty.

"Everyone in our street knew him. He couldn't walk down the street without someone fussing him. He loved running around the garden chasing tennis balls. He loved life and he loved people.

"The cat is wandering round the house looking for him because they were best mates. He was a huge, huge part of our life.

"And he was a baby – he had at least another 10 years in him."

The local council's licensing team told her the sitter does not hold a dog boarding licence.

A spokeman for Vale of Glamorgan Council said: "The licensing department recommends that only licensed dog boarders are used."

Barry And District News:

A Rover spokesman said: "At Rover most of us are pet parents ourselves and our hearts go out to Teddie’s family and all who loved him.

"We are committed to supporting Teddie’s owner during this challenging time. Our 24/7 trust and safety team is currently investigating the situation. We are removing the sitter from our platform, preventing them from offering further pet care services through Rover.

"Pet safety and the wellbeing of our community is our top priority at Rover. During this unprecedented heatwave in the UK we are proactively providing safety information to members of our community to help protect pets."

South Wales Police confirmed that they received a report concerning the death of a dog which happened on Monday, July 18. Inquiries are ongoing.