Sam, the West Highland Terrier, who had been sentenced to death for barking, has been spared by the Court of Appeal in Edinburgh

Sam, the dog sentenced to death for barking, has won a reprieve but will have to find a new home.

The Court of Appeal has overturned a destruction order and has placed the dog in the hands of the Scottish Society for the Protection of Animals.

His owner, William Shaw, 56, from Aberdeen was reported to be “very upset” that the dog would not be returning to him, but glad that Sam would not be destroyed.

Sam has been undergoing training with the National Canine Defence League for the past three weeks.

A spokeswoman for the League said: “He’s just an ordinary dog and doesn’t bark any more than any other dog defending his territory.

“We found that the triggers that set him off were things like the postman and the sound made on the gravel in the driveway.

“We recommended he should be returned to his owner with some changes like putting down tarmac instead of the gravel and we’re disappointed our recommendations weren’t taken up.

“But we’re delighted the decision has been overturned. It’s a case which should never have got as far as the High Court. “

Sam had originally been sentenced to death after complaints from a neighbour about his barking.

A petition calling for the terrier to be saved gathered around 1,700 signatures. The campaign also won the backing of former French film star, Brigitte Bardot.

  • A four-year-old Alsatian has been sentenced to death by the High Court in London. During a fight with another dog, Dino bit the other dog’s owner when she tried to separate them. Dino’s owners are deciding whether to make a final appeal to the Court of Appeal or the House of Lords.