A Springer Spaniel is recovering in a veterinary surgery after he plunged 150ft down a cliff face near Hartland in North Devon.

Six-year-old Skip was being walked by his new owners Nigel and Mary Smith on the first day of their holiday when the accident happened yesterday (27 May).

According to RSPCA collection officer Diane Lewis his owners said he got very excited and jumped over the edge by mistake.

“Skip is a rescue dog who came from an animal shelter in the Midlands just over a month ago and it appears that he was more used to an urban environment.”

It took 10 coastguards three hours to rescue Skip, who was eventually winched to safety using a special dog harness by two of the guards, who were lowered down the cliff face to reach him.

Battered and bruised, with a split lip and cut eye, Skip was first thought to have broken his hind legs, as he was very swollen and lame, but the vets found no fractures. They stitched him up and he is reportedly recovering well.

“His owners are delighted he is making such good progress,” said Diane. “Everyone involved in the rescue was fantastic and hopefully he will be released soon.”

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