A dad has been slammed as ‘shameful and stupid’ after a photo of a grinning horse photobombing a selfie with his toddler won them a £2,000 holiday – because he didn’t have the horse owner’s consent.
David Bellis, 31, says three-year-old son Jacob had taken the photo of the pair enjoying a walk together in Prestatyn, North Wales,  when a horse suddenly popped up in the background – smiling and even sticking out his tongue.
Unsurprisingly, they realised the comedic potential of the snap – and entered it into Thomson Holiday’s ‘Made Me Smile’ competition, where they scooped a £2,000 trip, the family’s first trip together.
But the likelihood of that trip has now been thrown into jeopardy, after horse owner Nicola Mitchell told him that she didn’t give consent to photograph the horse – and she is contacting Thomson Holidays to complain.
David has even received messages from Nicola’s friends, who have branded him ‘shameful’ and demanded that he hand over half the winnings.
He said: ‘Jacob is really upset and has been crying and asking me if we are not going to be allowed to go on the holiday anymore.
Nicola's daughter Katelyne with Betty the horse (Picture: Mercury)
Nicola’s daughter Katelyne with Betty the horse (Picture: Mercury)
‘I don’t understand why Nicola is so annoyed about it. I was on a public path that everyone uses to go to the local school and everyone sees the horse there.
‘I think they are just jealous that I have won something nice – it just shows how bitter people can be.
‘At first they thought I was winning £2,000 cash and were saying I should give them half, but it’s a holiday so they are not getting a penny.’
But Nicola argues that the horse, named Betty, has been taught to stick out her tongue – and she could have won the competition with daughter Katelyne if she had been made aware of it.
Nicola said: I ‘was really annoyed to hear he had won a £2,000 holiday and had used a picture of our horse without our permission. He should have asked for our consent.