The actor, who plays DI Neville Parker in the drama filmed on the Caribbean island, said: “There’s loads of strays in Guadeloupe. We were filming at night and we walked to this location which was a bar and this little tiny black dog, she was three months old, comes bounding up like an idiot. Instead of being a little bit sensible and keeping her distance, she’s like, ‘Hi everyone!’ Dead happy to see us all. “Anyway, I carry on, do the scene, we finish for the night and we head back to the base and the woman who is the costume supervisor has scooped her up under her arm and is walking along with her.
“I’d already named her at this point, ‘Oh, she’s a little explorer, I’m going to call her Dora’ (after the animated cartoon character).”
He added: “A couple of months go past, I see the dog every day, I let her into my trailer, we’re hanging out, we’ve got this great bond. Bless the costume department, they got her a European passport, they got her a rabies vaccination, they got her worm tablets, they took her to the vet and they were ready to take her back home – they’d found a family in the UK that she was gonna go to.
“We finished the shoot after a couple of months, we’re all ready to fly back and Tier 4 lockdown hits followed by full lockdown in the UK and all the flight rules change.
“So they’ve got this dog, they’ve got to go home to the UK and they can’t take this dog and they’re like, ‘Oh my god, what are we gonna do?'”.
After leaving her with friends on the island for a short time, Ralf, 41, decided to fly Dora the 1,366 miles to Miami, near his home in Florida. The star lives with his fiancee, American screenplay writer Lindsey Ferrentino, up the coast in Cape Canaveral.
Ralf added: “You wouldn’t believe the time and effort it took to get her to the US. To get her over I probably spent about £2,000. She’s just gorgeous.”
Viewers last night saw the finale of the current series of Death In Paradise, which has been pulling in over eight million viewers.
And a new series has been commissioned – leaving Ralf wide open to the charms of another stray in Guadeloupe.