Dedicated RSPCA staff are providing round-the-clock care to a litter of newborn puppies who were found abandoned in a bin bag in the woods just hours after being born.
The litter of 11 newborn pups was found by passers-by who were walking through a wooded area off Heath Lane, Huddersfield, on Monday 20 June when they spotted a rubbish bag and went to investigate.
RSPCA deputy chief inspector Sara Jordan, who is now investigating, said: “It’s so lucky that there were people passing who went to look inside this bag because the puppies were only hours old and were extremely vulnerable.
“They had been dumped in the woodland, in a bag, and all still had their umbilical cords attached.
“The finders rushed them to a local vet who checked them all over and estimated that they were just a few hours old. Sadly, one of the puppies was struggling to breathe and was very sick so they made the difficult decision to put her to sleep.
“The veterinary clinic called us and asked for help as they didn’t have the facilities or the expertise to hand-rear the remaining ten pups.”
The RSPCA is now investigating to find out who is responsible for abandoning the puppies.
Sara added: “I’m really concerned that there’s a bitch somewhere who has just given birth to these puppies and could require veterinary attention.
“I’m also keen to hear from anyone who may know who is responsible for abandoning these puppies in such an irresponsible way. They were so young and vulnerable, more of them could have easily died.
“Times are tough at the moment and we understand that many families are struggling to cope, particularly given the rising cost of living, and we fear that we’ll see many, many more pets being relinquished to charities or abandoned because their owners simply don’t know where to turn.
“But abandoning tiny puppies like this is so irresponsible and cruel. Please, please never abandon your pet but ask for help before things get so desperate.”
The team asks that anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area at the time or who knows a dog who recently gave birth but doesn’t have a litter to nurse contact the RSPCA’s appeal line, confidentially, on 0300 123 8018.
Earlier this month, the RSPCA and Scottish SPCA published the Animal Kindness Index, a report looking at the nation’s attitude towards animals.
The report, based on a YouGov survey, revealed that the rising cost of living and the cost of pet ownership could threaten our love for our pets, with 78% of pet owners saying they think the cost of living will impact their animals, almost seven out of ten (68%) expressing concern that the cost of care was increasing, and a fifth (19%) worried about how they’ll afford to feed their pets.
The report also recorded an increase in animal intake at many RSPCA centres, with the charity seeing 49% more rabbits, 14% more cats and 3% more dogs in the first five months of 2022 (compared to the same period in 2021).