Dumped puppies reunited with rescuers
Six puppies who were callously dumped in a roadside bin have reunited with their rescuers ten days after they were found.
The five-week-old kelpie crosses were stuffed in two flea-infested Drover-brand dog food bags, wrapped with coat hanger wire at a rest stop between Wigley Flat and Kingston on Sunday November 1.
Nicole Olsen, 38, of Gawler was experiencing car troubles and had pulled over to a road stop with her six-year-old daughter Harper when she heard a whimper coming from a nearby bin.
"I started looking around as we were in the middle of nowhere," Ms Olsen told The Advertiser.
"My daughter started crying because she thought it was a baby."
Ms Olsen kicked the lid off the bin and upon seeing the bags, was apprehensive to remove them, unsure of what was inside.
She opened a bag and saw a kelpie puppy looking back at her.
"They were very warm and there was a lot of condensation in the bags, they were sweaty."
Ms Olsen notified the police and took the puppies home to give them food and water.
They were cleaned and bathed as they were covered in fleas and maggots.
The RSPCA took the eight puppies to their Lonsdale shelter for treatment, but unfortunately two died as a result of being trapped in the bag.
Ms Olsen says she still feels "sick" and struggles to find a reason why someone would dump animals in a bin.
"It was just a nightmare really," she said.
"I really can't fathom the idea that the only option was to leave eight puppies in the bin."
On Wednesday morning, the pups and the Olsens were reunited as the RSPCA launches its Guardian Angel Christmas Appeal, aimed at supporting homeless animals.
The charity says the festive season sees an increase in unwanted and neglected animals coming to their shelters.
CEO of the RSPCA Paul Stevenson is urging members of the community to dig deep to help animals in similar situations to the kelpie puppies.
"This incredible survival story captures the very worst and the very best of humanity," he said.
"The huge outpouring of outrage and concern for these puppies illustrates how important animal welfare is for many South Australians."
Upon being reunited with the puppies, Ms Olsen said she felt overwhelmed and was fighting back tears to see the dogs looking healthy and happy.
She said she does not consider herself to be a hero and believes anyone would do the same.
"I don't consider anything that we've done to be considered out of the ordinary. I'd imagine anyone in our situation would've done the same thing," she said.
RSPCA volunteer and foster carer of three of the puppies, Natalie Muckalt, was made redundant from her full-time job four months before following her dream of working with animals.
"It was traumatic not only for the puppies but for the family who saved them," Ms Muckalt said.
"The puppies have come leaps and bounds from where they were, there seems to be no trauma remaining, they're really trusting and loving."
Ms Olsen and Harper will be adopting Angel, a tanned kelpie cross, when she is 10-to-12-weeks-old.
The RSPCA said they had received an overwhelming amount of expressions of interests for the puppies, and encourage the wider community to adopt the over 600 animals currently living at shelters throughout the state.
Anyone with information on who dumped the puppies is being asked to contact the RSPCA on 1300 577 722.
Originally published as Dumped puppies reunited with rescuers