Vegan footballer Chris Smalling says he's 'heartbroken' after his pet dog Miley has died from allegedly eating rat poison.
His other dogs Summer and Ruben were believed to also have fallen ill from the poison but have survived.
In an emotional Instagram post, Smalling credits Miley as the reason for finding a 'connection and compassion' towards all animals.
'We were inseparable'
"Now a very, very big part of my heart is missing. Anyone who knew me and Miley knew we were inseparable. People often joked how I had two women in my life," he said.
"When I first met Miley I was afraid of her. I grew up with many different neighbors with aggressive dogs thinking that's how all dogs are.
'A special soul'
"Without her, I wouldn't have found the connection and compassion that I was missing towards all animals.
"I could never have imagined just how much of an impact she would have on my life. You were a special soul and we were truly blessed that you came into our lives."