A retired greyhound has proved to be just the spark of independence Kallum Neal needed.

The 11-year-old suffers from quadruple cerebral palsy since he was born nine weeks early and has to rely on a wheelchair.

But he went on a homing day walk, run by the Swindon branch of the Greyhound Trust, and met Spitfire Jet, a recently-retired greyhound.

Ever since, the pair have been inseparable with Kallum taking on more responsibility.

His mum Jo said: “We did have a dog before, a golden retriever, but he was a bit lively for Kallum.

"He was in his face and jumping all over him but having the greyhound, he’s so gentle

“It’s unbelievable how Jet took to Kallum and how Kallum cuddles him and he does as much as he can.

“I never thought a greyhound could be like that.

"The way he is with him is amazing, he’s a very gentle dog.”

Jet was a nervous dog himself before meeting Kallum, but since they met he’s come out of his shell and spends a lot of time with him.

Jo, from Wroughton, added: “Jet was a nervous dog when we first got him but in the space of a week he came out of his shell and the two are good together.

“He’ll walk up alongside the wheelchair, which Kallum loves because he feels like he’s got some more responsibility there, like he can do more with this dog than what he’s been able to do with our old dog.

“It’s a nice friendship.”

The family live on a farm and take care of a number of other animals,” Jo explained. “But this is the first time Kallum has been able to be so hands on.

“Kallum’s been interested in the animals but hasn’t been able to do a lot with them.

“But with Jet he tries to help make his food, wants to hold the lead and when Kallum calls him he’ll come to him.

“We give him a bit more independence with him rather than with the other animals like the horses.”

Loretta Dixon, who works at Swindon Greyhound Stadium and oversees Greyhound Trust liaison, said: “We work very closely with our trainers and owners to help find the perfect homes for their canine athletes once they retire from their careers on the track.

“Jet is a wonderful ambassador showcasing what fantastic, gentle and loving pets retired greyhounds make.

“It has been so touching to see these boys build such a beautiful bond together.

“Jet has hit the jackpot with his new best friend and we wish him a very happy retirement.”