Marriott hotels has suspended its pest control after a dog belonging to a local man was shot dead at one of the hotel chain's country sites.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /?>
John Kirby, who lives near the Meon Valley golf course resort near Southampton, reportedly heard a gunshot before finding the body of his whippet, Wilma, in fields next to his home.
Marriott said it was "helping police" after a pest controller at the resort allegedly shot the animal, mistakenly thinking it was a rabbit.
A hotel spokesman told local newspaper the Southern Daily Echo that he was "deeply sorry for the distress this unprecedented incident has caused the dog's owners".
Marriott confirmed that all pest control has been suspended at all its UK sites while an investigation into the incident is underway.