A brave 12-year-old boy has left his pit bull puppy at an animal shelter in a box with a teddy and a handwritten letter explaining that he could not protect it from his aggressive father.

The puppy was left in a box at the Xollin animal shelter in central Mexico and volunteers posted a photo of the dog next to the boy's letter.

The shelter's message said: "We have this puppy here that became viral online after a 12-year-old boy decided to leave it with us to save it from his father's abuse."

The boy gave the puppy away to protect it. Photo / CEN/australscope
The boy gave the puppy away to protect it. Photo / CEN/australscope

According to the animal shelter, the box was found by volunteers at the front door with the pooch inside alongside a letter and a teddy bear.

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The letter said: "My name is Andres and I am 12 years old. My mum and I have decided to leave the dog in your hands without my father knowing about it because he wanted to sell it.

"He beat and kicked it. He kicked it so hard once that he hurt its tail. I hope you can help it and look after it. I left a teddy bear with it so the pooch can remember me."

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Shelter staff said they named the animal Rene and are waiting for a family to adopt it.

Following news of the incident, the shelter has reportedly received over 300 offers to adopt the pit bull although they lamented the fact that people do not seem interested in the other animals also waiting for a family.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE - DO YOU NEED HELP?

If it's an emergency and you feel that you or someone else is at risk, call 111.

If you're in danger now:

• Phone the police on 111 or ask neighbours of friends to ring for you.

• Run outside and head for where there are other people.

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• Scream for help so that your neighbours can hear you.

• Take the children with you.

• Don't stop to get anything else.

• If you are being abused, remember it's not your fault. Violence is never okay

Where to go for help or more information:

• Women's Refuge: Free national crisis line operates 24/7 - 0800 refuge or 0800 733 843

• Shine, free national helpline 9am- 11pm every day - 0508 744 633

• It's Not Ok: Information line 0800 456 450

• Shakti: Providing specialist cultural services for African, Asian and middle eastern women and their children. Crisis line 24/7 0800 742 584

• Ministry of Justice:

• National Network of Stopping Violence:

• White Ribbon: Aiming to eliminate men's violence towards women, focusing this year on sexual violence and the issue of consent.

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