A theatre boss has spoken out against the “mindless vandalism” which saw one of the charity Snowdog sculptures in South Shields damaged.
One of the figures, dubbed Pawdington, which was placed outside the Customs House, in Mill Dam, has been attacked by vandals.
The giant canine, designed by Mandii Pope, is part of the Great Snowdog Trail, which is raising funds for St Oswald’s Hospice in Newcastle.
Customs House executive director, Ray Spencer, said: “It is very sad when this great idea to engage families in a fun activity, and at the same time raise much-needed funds for St Oswald’s Hospice, can be the subject to mindless vandalism, which benefits no-one in our community.
“I do hope when all of the dogs return from the virtual vet they are cherished for the remainder of their stay across the north east.”
Across the North East, there are 61 large Snowdog sculptures, each measuring 1.5m tall, and 97 smaller ones which all have a unique identity after being given a new leash of life by artists and schoolchildren.
The dogs will be in place for the next 10 weeks with people able to track the trail on a special app.
At the end of the run, the dogs, based on the Snowdog character from Raymond Briggs’ The Snowman and The Snowdog, will be auctioned off for the hospice.
Pawdington, who is based on Paddington Bear, has had his red hat removed.
Last week Snowdogs in Sunderland and Newcastle were also damaged by vandals.
Pawdington tweeted from his own account: “Sorry to say I’m off to the vets this weekend after a rough night. I’ll be back soon.”
Find out more at www.greatnorthsnowdogs.co.uk