A WOMAN may have killed herself because she couldn't stand living without her dog, an inquest heard today.

Victoria Bendon, 20, was found dead at her home by her brother Anthony Bendon on June 27 last year.

The carer had attempted to kill herself by hanging but when this failed she had cut her wrists as she lay on her bed, the inquest at Portsmouth heard.

Pc Robert Lewis, of Hampshire police, said that Miss Bendon had sent a text message to her friend Erin Searle saying: ''I can't go on without my baby, it was my life.

''It's over, I hate myself, I hate life.''

The inquest heard that Miss Bendon had recently given away her dog, Rocky, because she was working too many hours to take it for walks and look after it.

The hearing was told that the true meaning of the text message was unclear because Miss Bendon had had an abortion about two years previously and a friend's pregnancy scan picture was found nearby.

Miss Searle told the hearing that she believed the text message was referring to the dog.

She said: ''She missed him but she knew she was doing the right thing because she didn't have enough time, she was working all the hours under the sun.

''A friend was looking after him and she knew she could still walk him but she didn't want to upset Rocky.''

Anthony Bendon said he was unaware that his sister was upset and said that she was ''happy as Larry'' when he saw her the day before her death.

The inquest heard that Miss Bendon, from Kite Close, Waterlooville, had been taking anti-depressants and the coroner for Portsmouth and South East Hampshire David Horsley said there was a possibility she had stopped taking the tablets without completing the course of the prescription.

He said: ''If you are taking anti-depressants, you can't just stop taking them otherwise you can feel more depressed than you did before, I wonder if this may be a factor here.''

Recording a verdict of suicide while suffering from depression, he added: ''I can't believe anyone would do what she did unless she was ill from a psychiatric illness.

''It is a terrible shock for all her family and friends and I feel sorry for all of you.''