Eight tiny puppies owe their survival to the sharp eyes of a passing motorist, after they were dumped on the side of Farm Road in a fish bin.
The motorist came round a corner on Farm Road at about noon on Saturday May 5, noticed a silver vehicle — possibly a Nissan Primera — taking off at speed and caught sight of something on the side of the road.
Stopping to check, they found a red fish bin which contained a feed sack and eight emaciated puppies.
The bin of pups was handed to the SPCA Waipukurau Centre, where inspector Renee Hickey got her first sight of them.
"They were in horrible condition — skinny and covered in fleas. The vet who checked them said in they were so thin that if they hadn't been found they would not all have survived the night, given how cold it got. The volunteers who dealt with them that day all ended up in tears."
Renee says the pups were given worming treatment and were still passing worms five days later.
"It makes me worry about what condition their mother is in. This is illegal and completely unnecessary. Why couldn't they have driven a bit further and brought the pups in to the SPCA centre?
"I don't know what sort of human being can sleep at night knowing they had dumped these pups out in the cold."
The fish bin is with Police for finger printing and the four healthiest pups are at the SPCA Waipukurau Centre, but the other four have had to be split up and sent to foster carers to nurse them back to health.
Renee says anyone with information about the dumping can call the SPCA on 06 858 8933.
The state of the pups has inspired Renee to take part in next month's SPCA Jump to the Rescue to raise funds for their care and rehabilitation.
"I'm going to jump out of a plane," says Renee. "It's a a NZ SPCA fundraiser, a sponsored skydive, and as soon as I saw it online I thought — I'm going to jump for these pups."
Renee has challenged herself to beat the total raised by SPCA CEO Andrea Midgen.
"I am always bragging about how great the CHB community is, so here's the chance to prove it. I want to raise $5000."
To sponsor Renee, go to the SPCA Waipukurau Centre Facebook page.