Emmerdale's Tom King actor addresses upsetting dog abuse scenes

Emmerdale actor James Chase has weighed in on his evil character's abuse of dog Piper.

In scenes airing earlier this week, veterinary doctor Tom King's coercive control over wife Belle Dingle took an even darker turn when he injected their poor pooch with poison as a way of forcing her out of the mental health crisis assessment centre.

Stopping by the This Morning studio to discuss Tom's behaviour, Chase opened up about the storyline and explained how the Piper scene made him uncomfortable.

tom king, emmerdale

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"I love playing villainous roles, and this one is definitely the most challenging I have ever played," said the soap star.

"Certain scenes like syringing the dog was not... I really didn't like it, which is a good sign."

Following this on-screen animal abuse moment, Emmerdale posted a statement of reassurance on social media, reading: "These scenes can be distressing to watch, but we want to remind you that Minnie (AKA Piper) is a very good actor and is always living her best life on set!

"We can confirm that no harm has come to her whatsoever."

piper the dog, emmerdale

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Meanwhile, back when the coercive control storyline was first unveiled, Belle star Eden Taylor-Draper suggested she and Chase "were fully aware of the responsibility that would bring".

"But it is an important story to tell," she added. "Soaps offer the viewer a glimpse of life behind closed doors and reveal what people present to the world isn't always a truth.

"The sad reality is that behaviour like this in a relationship is all too prevalent. I hope we do this story justice. And if people are in a situation like this they should definitely get help."

Emmerdale airs on weeknights at 7.30pm on ITV1, and streams on ITVX.

Read more Emmerdale spoilers on our dedicated homepage

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