Five young puppies are in ISPCA care after they were abandoned in a cardboard box in County Longford.
The animal welfare charity said it is unclear how long the defenceless animals were left there before being discovered by a member of the public.
They are now “thankfully doing well despite the worst start in their young lives”.
The puppies were found in the box near Granard – and have since been named Sean, Stephanie, Michelle, Brendan and Gaza.
ISPCA’s National Animal Centre chief Trish Spargo said they have all got the all-clear from the vet – but won’t be available for adoption “for a few weeks yet, until they have fully recuperated after their ordeal.”
“Not only is it an offence to abandon an animal, but to leave vulnerable puppies in a cardboard box and walk away is extremely irresponsible and cowardly,” she said.
“It’s heartbreaking that anyone could put these innocent lives in such danger.”
The ISPCA is urging anyone with any information on who left them there to contact the ISPCA’s National Animal Helpline in confidence on 0818 515 515.
“We have so many other dogs in ISPCA care, patiently waiting for their chance of a happy new home and we are appealing to the public to consider adopting an older dog,” said Ms Spargo.
The ISPCA said it currently has over 250 dogs in its care and is looking for loving homes for 150 of them who are now rehabilitated and ready to go.
You can see the dogs that are ready for their new digs here or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
For those that are not in a position to rehome a dog, the charity is urging people to consider fostering or sharing social media posts to help the dogs find new homes.
The charity is also reminding pet owners of the positive benefits of getting their dogs neutered or spayed as soon as they are of age.
It said neutering and spaying have overwhelmingly positive benefits:
- Prevents unwanted litters of puppies.
- Reduces fighting and unwanted territorial behaviour.
- Has a positive effect on a dog’s health and lifespan.
- Reduces the risk of certain cancers.
You can donate to the ISPCA online or call the fundraising team on 087 0512603.