Mum forced to choose homelessness or sell beloved dog after fleeing rat-infested home

Sophie Ponting, mum-of-two from Swindon, Wiltshire, says the local council is telling her to relocate her cockapoo Luna and move into a hotel after their home was infested with rats

Mum-of-two Sophie is ‘disgusted’ at Swindon Council for saying she will have to repatriate her dog Luna

A heartbroken family claim they were told to sell their dog and move into a hotel because their house is infested with rats.

Sophie Ponting, 30, from Swindon, claims the local council told her to relocate her cockapoo Luna – telling her they might not be able to find her new home if she didn’t.

The mother-of-two has rented the terraced house in the Wiltshire town for eight years.

But now the house is on the market and in June the family will be left homeless.

Sophie says she has not failed to pay her rent once in her family’s lifetime – adding that she has been forced to spend her own money on ‘dramatic’ issues such as the problem present rats and mold.

Sophie gave Luna a home when she was a 9 week old puppy



But the retail worker is drawing a line under the sale of three-year-old pooch Luna.

The family – Sophie and her daughters Holly, seven, and Grace, 10 – gave the dog a home when she was just a nine-week-old puppy.

Speaking to The Sun, Sophie said: “I tried to find a new private hire but there’s just nothing suitable there.

“I was told that when we are expelled we will have to go to the council in case of emergency.

“They said it is very likely that we will be accommodated in a hotel as they have no accommodation available.”

The family are very stressed about their housing situation, with Sophie having to take medication for anxiety



The council could not tell the family how long they had been at the hotel, but said they would not be allowed to bring their dog.

The mum said she had ‘never been so disgusted’ and lost her ‘rag’ when the council told her that.

Sophie said Luna was “a family” and “not just a pet”.

She explained that the situation was causing distress to her children and led her to need medication for anxiety.

Continuing to share the stress the family has been through, Sophie claimed her daughter Holly, who had open heart surgery as a baby, was put at risk when the landlord told her to just wipe down the walls and to open the windows to deal with the mould. problem instead of solving it.

The mother-of-two said she tried using dehumidifiers, paint and vinegar to fix the mold problem, but she believes it’s due to the lack of insulation in the cavity walls.

The council said they would not be able to take Luna to the hotel



Pest control experts have looked into the rat infestation, but Sophie has been told a new home is unlikely to be found for her before her eviction date in June, meaning the family will have to get to the hotel.

In a statement, Swindon Borough Council said: “We do not have a no pets policy and will always try to find accommodation to allow our tenants to bring their pets with them.

“Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, this is not always possible as some emergency/temporary accommodation has a strict no pet policy.

“We understand this will be upsetting for the family, but we will work with them and support them in finding a suitable home for them and their dog.”

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