Four puppies left in a dumpster to die were reunited with their mother.
The circumstances are unclear, but the four orphaned puppies were brought into Animal Control by a Good Samaritan who found them in the garbage.
Meanwhile, Pinal County (Ariz.) Animal Care and Control says that the mother dog was reported missing by its owner on Tuesday of last week.
“It’s heartbreaking,” said Wendy Sowder of the Bark Side Rescue, the awesomely-named group which cared for the puppies in their mother’s absence.
“We try so hard to save lives; people just want to throw them away.”
Sowder used miniature bottles to nurse the puppies, fearing that they would die without their mother. Then a break in the case came the next afternoon.
It turns out the mom dog wandered to the Windmill Winery, where owner Katie Christ put two and two together as the story was making the headlines.
“We were just really thrilled that we could help,” Christ said later.
“I’m glad I saw the article because puppies need their mama.”
They now have her back, and all are said to be doing well.
“We don’t get good endings most of the time in this environment, so it’s heartwarming,” said Kaye Dickson, the Director of Pinal County Animal Care and Control.
Dickson says that officers are now following leads, so they can send the case to the County Attorney’s Office and prosecute the person responsible.
Officers say they’ve identified a person of interest in the case.