Dyed red dog rescued by animal shelter from owner who bought it because he 'liked the colour'

A dog, which was dyed bright red so she could be sold to an asylum seeker as a novelty, has been rescued from her owner.

Nicknamed Scarlet, she was taken in by an animal shelter and then put up for adoption with a new owner, who reported she is living a carefree and happy life.

While her fur is not completely clean yet, the colour has started fading and is almost unrecognisable from the bright red colour it had while living with the asylum seeker.

Animal activists were alarmed after finding the dog on the street in the company of the man living in a refugee camp in the town of Schimatari, in mainland Greece.

They said they were concerned that the colouring might have been harmful.

The red pigment was later identified as hair dye, and after the animal was taken to the vets, they confirmed that it did not appear to be suffering any skin ailments as a result of the stunt.

The immigrant claimed he had paid €150 (£133.75) for the animal because he had really liked the colour.

The dog's former owner, who was not named, did not say if he believed the colouring to be natural after he purchased it from individuals in the central square of Omonoia in Athens.