A missing dog cost a 27-year-old hospital cleaner his driving licence at Inverness Sheriff Court yesterday.
Paul Morell, of Manse Road, Ardersier, took his car in the early hours of July 8 this year to try and locate the dog.
The court heard he feared a local farmer would shoot it if the animal wandered on the land where stock was grazing.
But Morrell had been drinking with friends earlier in the evening and although he had stopped before returning home, he was still almost twice the limit.
Fiscal depute David Morton told the court that Morrell came to the attention of police because he crashed into a fence on Manse Road.
Defence solicitor James McNair said the alcohol had not caused the collision, but it had been a black-out suffered by his client.
He added that Morell was seeking medical advice about the event.
When charged, Morrell told police: “I am sorry. I was looking for my dog. He is still missing.”
He was fined £560 and banned from driving for a year.