The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are said to have secretly welcomed a new member of the family – a cocker spaniel puppy.
The couple’s beloved previous dog Lupo – a wedding present from Kate’s brother James – died in November.
They welcomed the new pup – bred by Mr Middleton from Lupo’s sister Luna – to their home at Anmer Hall in Norfolk a couple of months before Lupo died, the Mail on Sunday reported.
A source told the paper: “They were devastated when Lupo passed away, as any dog owner will understand.
“But they got the new puppy before he died. It was hoped that a younger dog would give Lupo some company and give him a little more life and energy.”
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their three children were said to be "besotted" with the adorable cocker spaniel.
Royal aides declined to comment on the puppy’s name.
It is understood the Cambridges had the pick of the litter and were helped in choosing by their children Prince George, seven, and Charlotte, five. Two-year-old Louis was probably too young to help.
The couple announced the death of Lupo in a rare personal post on their Instagram account.
“(Lupo) has been at the heart of our family for the past nine years and we will miss him so much,” they said.
Mr Middleton announced Luna’s litter of puppies were off to their new homes in an Instagram post with his partner Alizee Thevenet on July 24 last year.
He wrote: “56 days ago you were born, 56 days of early starts, lots of poo and half eaten socks but 56 days of pure joy watching you grow. But now it’s time for you go.
“I am sad to see you go, and yes I might cry but it will be with happiness as each of your new homes are bursting with love.
“You might be scared at first, that’s ok. Just be yourself and you will never understand how much happiness you will bring to your new families and all the people you meet. Make me proud, & remember to write. Lots of love.”