KFC has called off its lawyers after learning that a chicken shop in Thailand that created a Colonel Hitler logo had either shut down or had never existed in the first place.

Yum!, the parent company of KFC, told the Huffington Post that it was considering legal action after a photo of "Hitler" chicken surfaced on Twitter.

The company had used the KFC logo but replaced Colonel Sanders' face with Hitler's.

A spokesman for Yum! said: "We find it extremely distasteful and are considering legal action since it is an infringement of our brand trademark and has nothing to do with us."

The photo was found online by Andrew Spooner, the author of Footprint Thailand Handbook who said he did not take the photograph himself.

Despite that, media outlets picked up on the picture and the story went viral.

The Daily Mail quoted a man called Alan Robertson as saying: "The place opened last month and nobody quite knows what to make of it.

Photo from 2011

"I went in for a bite last week and got some fried chicken and asked the guy behind the counter why it was called Hitler.

"He just shrugged his shoulders and said the owners had thought it was good image."

Spooner wrote on Twitter: "[The] best thing about that Daily Mail piece is that the restaurant is not in Bangkok and the Mail made up quote. My tweeted photo of Hitler Fried Chicken has gone global and viral. 1000s of tweets, it's in about 20 newspapers and all use false Mail quote.

"I emailed the Daily Mail and told them there was little chance 'Alan Robertson' existed. They didn't reply. Even more amusingly KFC's legal people emailed me and asked me where 'Hitler' chicken is."

The Bangkok Post added that the restaurant in question was in Ubon Ratchathani, not Bangkok and was called H-ler, not Hitler.