Family of seven pups found stuffed in small crate, abandoned on side of road

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A FedEx driver was traveling along a Hillsborough County road on Monday and noticed a small crate on the side of a road. Quickly, the driver noticed it was stuffed with seven dogs in the sweltering Florida heat.

The driver grabbed the kennel -- with the pups piled on each other -- and drove them to Hillsborough County’s animal shelter, but didn’t realize it was closed on Mondays. Luckily, a woman was also unaware of the shelter's closure that day and arrived to renew her own dog's registration. She kindly offered to take them to the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. But not before taking them home to feed them, bathe them and provide water. They also played in her backyard for a while.

She placed the Terrier-Chihuahua mixed pups into larger crates and brought them to the Humane Society later that day.

The Humane Society shared a Facebook live video introducing them to their shelter. The seven dogs were determined to be five puppies, possibly six weeks old, and two adult females. One is most likely the mother, and the other, an aunt.

The puppies appear to be old enough to no longer need nursing, one of the shelter workers said. They all appeared healthy, with no hair loss, which is good news.

“Maybe someone just got really overwhelmed,” one of the workers is heard saying. “Regardless, it is illegal to abandon animals. Let’s help spread the word. If you get overwhelmed, it’s understandable, but you need to bring them into a shelter and not just leave them on the side of the road where it’s hot and they can get hit.”

Four of the puppies have black fur, with one having tan fur. You can imagine the sun soaking into the black coats of the majority, the shelter said.

“They are going to be fine,” the Humane Society said. “Thank you to Fedex and the lovely lady who took them in for a few hours and loved them and bathed them and fed them. They really hit the jackpot today crossing her path.”

The puppies will need to go to a foster home for about two to three weeks before they can be adopted. The mother and aunt may possibly be up for adoption this week. 

The Humane Society is searching for a a foster for the puppies for up to three weeks. Anyone who is interested can reach out through email: The shelter also said they will announce adoption news on its website