They approached it carefully and, seeing it wasn’t moving, headed straight to the shops for emergency supplies of lettuce and tomato.
When the poorly runaway refused to eat, they naturally assumed it had been injured by a cat or, worse still, scared to death.
So they called the Knoxwood Wildlife Rescue Centre, near Wigton, Cumbria.
It was only when rescue volunteer Pauline Adams arrived that the pair discovered the tortoise was not real. ‘I was worried it might have died,’ said Mrs Parker, 67. ‘But then the lady from Knoxwood looked at it, picked it up and turned it over.
‘She said: ‘‘It’s not dead, it’s ceramic.’’ I was so shocked because it looked real.
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