The dog, named Miracle, appeared on the program to perform a magic trick — but it was his touching survival story which really stole the show, according to The Sun.
“He spent the early part of his life in unimaginable conditions as a victim of the dog meat trade,” his owner Amanda Leask told the panel of judges, including Simon Cowell.
“When the rescuer first saw him, she thought he was dead, but when her camera flashed, he opened an eye. It was a miracle he was still alive. We brought him back to Scotland and slowly nurtured him back to health.”
As a victim of the illegal dog meat trade, Miracle was forced to live in gruesome conditions, crammed in a cage with 1,000 other dogs. But now the brave pup — who “refused to die” — lives with Leask and brings comfort to her son, Kyle, who has cerebral palsy and autism, she said.
“If Kyle becomes upset by a situation such as too many people invading his space, Miracle will go to him and let him grab the fur on the back of his neck for comfort,” Leask said.
Leask first fell in love with Miracle after reading about the shocking dog meat trade in Thailand and seeing a photo of him posted online by a rescue group, according to The Sun. After months of trying to track the dog down, she then had him flown to Edinburgh.
The panel of judges, which includes notoriously cantankerous Cowell, were moved to tears by the dog’s tale.
In the show, Miracle performs a magic trick that cleverly reveals some other four-legged friends Leask, who is an award-winning dog rescuer, has brought along. The episode is to be aired in the UK on Saturday night.
The illegal dog meat trade is one of the “the most serious animal welfare issues in Asia,” according to rescue group Soi Dog. The group says dogs are tortured and skinned alive because people believe “pain inflicted leads to the tenderizing of the meat.”