AN abused dog seen wandering the streets in Cyprus has found a loving new home with a family in Runcorn.

Ozita Rowlands, of Halton Village, adopted Julio the four-year-old Bruno Jura Hound at the end of last year after seeing his photograph on the D.O.G Rescue Cyprus Facebook page, an organisation which finds homes for stray dogs.

Ozita said: "He was found wandering the streets of Cyprus.

"The amazing women at D.O.G Rescue found him and he was then placed in a pound- unfortunately he was there for three months, no one seemed to want to take him on.

"I decided to pay for his flight money in an attempt to raise interest for him but still he waited in the pound.

"In the end we decided to home him, and six rescue dogs became seven."

Ozita has also rescued two Basset Hounds, a Miniature Dachshund, a Lurcher, a Bedlington Terrier and a Sabueso Hound.

Julio arrived in the UK in February after a long journey which included two flights and an eight-hour ride to Lymm service station where Ozita was waiting to take him home.

She recalled: "He was in his crate cowering and shaking and covered in his own urine.

"He apparently wet himself on the first flight and the rescuers at D.O.G told me he was really scared in his travel crate waiting to board the first flight.

"Some of you may be wondering why we have to put these dogs through all this to get to the UK.

"Well, in Cyprus they have a huge problem with stray and abandoned dogs."

Ozita said this is because of the popularity of using dogs in hunting, meaning many run away or get killed.

Now that Julio is part of a family, he is slowly becoming a different dog, but still has a long way to go.

Ozita said: "He is scared of being outside. Sounds scare him. He expects me to smack or hit him when I gently tell him not to do something.

"He wouldn't give us eye contact and always kept his head down, it looks like he has been forced to not show any kind of expression.

"Slowly he is coming out of his shell. He observes my other dogs playing and he is slowly joining in. He comes up to me and nuzzles me from time to time.

"He just does not know how to be loved, he has never been loved.

"Now he has a family that loves him dearly."

Ozita is appealing to members of the public to consider rescuing a dog and giving them a second chance at life rather than buying from a breeder.

For more information about the D.O.G organisation that saved Julio's life, visit their Facebook page.