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An Italian circus has been passing off two painted dogs as pandas

The ‘pandas’ were actually chow chow puppies.

YOU COULD SAY it was panda-monium. (We’ll get our coats.)

The owner of an Italian circus has been charged with the use of false documents after it was discovered that the ‘pandas’ on show were in fact two painted chow chow puppies.

The Guardian reports that members of the public paid a fee to have their photograph taken with the fake pandas before the start of every show. The punters couldn’t tell the difference – but the police could.

A spokeswoman for the Italian forestry corps says the dogs were in good health, except for watery eyes that were a result of the “continuous flash to which they were exposed”.

Despite everything, the dogs have been left with their owners – on the condition that they are no longer used to impersonate pandas.

Police are continuing investigations to decide whether to charge the circus owners with fraud and animal cruelty.

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