X Factor UK causes outrage over DOLPHINS... but Simon Cowell saves the day

Final eight boys

The X Factor has found itself in hot water over dolphins, of all things.

Usually it's problems with the judges or claims of fixing that the programme has to defend.

But the upcoming judges' houses episode as prompted over 7,000 complaints online already before even airing over its use of dolphins.

While in Mexico, Mel B and her boys are seen swimming with the animals, in clips that had been set to appear on the Xtra Factor.

Pictures were also sent out to the press, above.

An online petition called on bosses to axe the scenes.

The petition organiser wrote online: "Imagine my horror when at the end of the show there was a quick preview of next week's talent selection process at the judges' houses dotted around the world... And one of them glorified a Dolphinarium with the contestants in a pool somewhere, being up close and personal with captive dolphins, performing tricks and giving kisses."

They added: "My goal? .... To apply enough pressure with as many signatures as possible to appeal Simon Cowell's animal loving nature, encouraging him into reconsidering putting this segment in next weekends show."

X Factor boss Simon Cowell has now responded, saying he'll make sure that the scenes are not aired.

He tweeted tonight: "Reading your tweets. I had no idea Xtra Factor producers filmed with dolphins. This will NOT be showed on Saturday."

He added: "I think you all know my view on cruelty to animals so thank you all for your concern."

The X Factor airs this Friday, Saturday and Sunday on ITV.

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