'Britain's Got Talent': Simon Cowell Reflects On Last Year's Dog Swap Controversy

Winners Jules and Matisse used a stunt dog in their routine.

Simon Cowell has spoken out about the controversy erupted over last year's 'Britain's Got Talent' winners, Jules O'Dwyer and Matisse the dog.

Viewers were outraged after it emerged that Jules had used a stunt dog during her winning routine, which saw one of her other canines perform a tightrope trick in place of Matisse.

<strong>Simon Cowell</strong>
Simon Cowell

The matter prompted an Ofcom probe, with many calling for the pair to be stripped of their title.

Speaking about the media storm ahead of the new series, Simon has claimed that there was "no intent to deceive anyone", adding the incident should have been put "into context".

“I’m used to it, to be honest with you. Listen, it’s not a hurricane!" he said.

“There were three dogs and not two dogs, you have to put it into some kind of context."

He continued: "At the same time, I am responsible and the viewers have to trust us. It’s got to be fair but when you make live shows there’s always a risk that something could go wrong. But I am never afraid to deal with it afterwards. I’ll always deal with it head on and there was no intent to deceive anyone.”

<strong>Jules O'Dwyer with dogs Matisse and Chase</strong>
Jules O'Dwyer with dogs Matisse and Chase
David M. Benett via Getty Images

In the immediate aftermath of last year's scandal, ‘BGT’ producers issued an apology to viewers, stating that they should have made it clearer that the other dog used, Chase, was part of the routine.

Jules also insisted that she had not attempted to mislead the public, telling ITV News: "I was disappointed when people said I allegedly hid Chase and I was trying to make it like Chase was Matisse. That's not so.

‘Britain’s Got Talent’ returns on Saturday (9 March) at 7pm on ITV.

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