Saturday Night Takeaway winner 'heartbroken' after paraplegic dog banned from dream holiday

Saturday Night Winner Tammy Fox and her beloved pooch Pumpkin (Instagram @pumpkinonwheels_pumpkinpower)
Saturday Night Winner Tammy Fox and her beloved pooch Pumpkin (Instagram @pumpkinonwheels_pumpkinpower)

A Saturday Night Takeaway winner says she is devastated after being told that her paralysed dog would not be allowed to go on the family holiday she won.

Charity worker Tammy Fox, 43, was chosen to be in the audience of 410 volunteers for her work running Pumpkin and Friends, a charity raising awareness of disabled animals.

She was initially over the moon when told that she had won a dream family holiday for four people, however her happiness soon evaporated when she was told Pumpkin, her two-year-old paraplegic West Highland Terrier, would not be permitted to go.

Ms Fox claims she has now had to cancel the trip because travel firm TUI said the pooch could not travel because she is not an assistance dog.

Both she and partner Richard Blogg, 45, offered to keep a close eye on Pumpkin, who uses a special buggy with wheels and has no bladder control, but were still told no due to "UK airline policies".

Speaking about the ordeal to The Sun, she fumed: "I'm angry. This is effectively discrimination against my disabled dog. We wouldn't have the holiday if it wasn't for Pumpkin so it's only right that she comes.

"We're all devastated after being given a prize only for our dreams to be snatched away from us. We had such a good time on the show but it's all been spoilt.”

A spokesperson for TUI said: "We were delighted when Tammy was recognised on Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway as we think she does amazing work. We appreciate she’s disappointed it’s not possible to bring Pumpkin on the holiday prize she was awarded. This is in no way discriminatory against Pumpkin, but sadly UK airline policies prohibit non assistance dogs travelling in an airplane cabin.

"We’ve discussed this with Tammy and understand she doesn’t want to travel without Pumpkin. Whilst we’re tied to terms and conditions and policies around the prize, we’re in touch with her team about other ways we might be able to support the charity as a gesture of goodwill."

When contacted for additional comment, ITV directed the Standard to the statement from TUI.

Fox has since taken to Instagram to issue an update, saying TUI has now made her an offer which she says has left her “extremely hurt and insulted”.

She explained: “TUI have now contacted me with an unreasonable offer of a £500 Tui gift voucher for the charity Pumpkin & Friends Charity 1199484.Adding: “Personally I feel extremely hurt and insulted.”