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11 puppies found in trash bag with dead mother

Photos of the puppies being rescued. (The Killingsworth family)
Photos of the puppies being rescued. (The Killingsworth family)
Published: Apr. 26, 2016 at 4:19 PM CDT|Updated: Apr. 27, 2016 at 12:28 AM CDT
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(Source: WSFA 12 News)
(Source: WSFA 12 News)

BARBOUR CO., AL (WSFA) - An investigation is underway in Barbour County after two teenagers found a trash bag on a dirt road in Clayton with a dozen animals inside.

Hannah Killingsworth and Reid Potthoff were enjoying their Sunday afternoon out riding a four-wheeler when their ride came to a halt after hearing a high pitch whining sound coming from a trash bag.

"It was pretty scary actually," Potthoff said. "We didn't know what to do, we called for help."

When they open the bag, they discovered 10 puppies, along with one dead puppy and their dead mother.

"Try to figure out who would do that. Even some people that I know that aren't really dog people just wouldn't throw animals in a trash bag," Potthoff said.

The puppies had not even opened their eyes yet, which means they were less than nine days old.

"I don't think they would have made it at the end of the day if they wouldn't have found them," said Nicole Benefield, who helped rescue the animals.

Benefield believes the dog actually gave birth inside the trash bag.

"When I opened the bag, there was blood, and I guess where they were born. There was so much in there, I'm surprised they didn't drown," Benefield said.

A police report has been filed and Clayton Police Chief Jamey Williams says the investigation is ongoing.

As far as the pups, we're told they are in foster care, being nursed back to health and are doing well.

"I was just thankful that almost all of them made it out," Benefield said.

"Now that people know more about it, they will be more aware things like this happen all the time," Killingsworth said. "It's a good feeling to know that you did something right, that you could help something so innocent."

Pal of Barbour County is offering a reward for the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible.

You are asked to call Clayton police if you have any information that could help with this case.

Copyright 2016 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.