A Florida animal shelter is working to save the life of a dog and her eight puppies who were found locked inside a “rusty metal crate” at a construction site.

Heartbreaking photos of the emaciated and fearful canines were shared on social media by the Humane Society of Tampa Bay (HSTB), which called the animals’ ordeal “absolutely deplorable” in a Facebook post Tuesday.

As of Tuesday, the conditions of the nine dogs are “unstable,” according to the Tampa, Florida-based shelter. It is unclear why the mother dog and her pups were abandoned.

Emaciated dog calls for arrest
An emaciated dog in Nicaragua, on Sept. 24, 2020. A dog and her eight “hungry” puppies were found Monday locked in a rusty crate at a construction site in Tampa, Florida.
Newsweek/INTI OCON / AFP

news week contacted HSTB representatives by email Tuesday for comment.

HSTB, a nonprofit organization that provides shelter and services for homeless and at-risk animals, said the dogs were rescued after a worker reported to work at the construction site Monday afternoon.

“Since it was a Monday and the site was closed for the weekend, there was no telling how long those poor dogs were out there in the heat and rain,” said HSTB, noting that all nine canines were “full” at the Closed box. for an unknown period.

ABSOLUTELY DISAPPOINTING 🥺 Yesterday afternoon, a worker showed up at his construction site to find a mother dog and her eight hungry puppies all stuffed inside a rusty metal crate! Since he was a…

The construction worker who found the dogs transported the mom and puppies to HSTB, where admitting medical staff began administering help immediately. However, shelter staff said they quickly discovered the pups were in very bad shape, saying they were “emaciated, hungry and full of parasites and fleas.”

“Some even had to receive emergency blood transfusions because of the anemia they had,” HSTB said. “We can’t imagine what they have been through, but we are grateful that they are in our care to look after them. Their conditions are unstable, but we will do everything in our power to save their lives.”

HSTB too shared photos of severely malnourished animals on her Instagram. In one image, a scrawny puppy stares at the camera as his ribs stick out and his eyes appear sunken.

Since the mother and pups are still receiving medical attention, it is unclear when they will be available for adoption. HSTB accepts donations, which help cover medical expenses, among other costs associated with caring for the canine family.

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