California

Watch: Woman arrested on suspicion of abandoning 3-day-old puppies in dumpster, but there’s a happy ending

Watch: Woman dumps bagful of puppies in trash, but there’s a cute, happy ending

A California woman faces charges after authorities said she tossed a bag of seven, 3-day-old puppies into a trash can on a hot day in Coachella.
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A California woman faces charges after authorities said she tossed a bag of seven, 3-day-old puppies into a trash can on a hot day in Coachella.

A woman was arrested in Coachella on Monday on suspicion of abandoning seven puppies in a dumpster, according to Riverside County Animal Services.

Deborah Sue Culwell, 54, was arrested at her home and was facing up to seven counts of felony animal cruelty, the agency said.

Surveillance footage from April 18, 2019, shared by the agency shows a woman exiting her vehicle and throwing a trash bag into a dumpster behind an auto parts store. An employee of the store contacted authorities after a homeless man heard the puppies inside the bag, NBC Los Angeles reported.

Officers rescued the seven palm-sized puppies, which were all 3 days old.

New footage from Riverside County Animal Services shows that all of the puppies are alive. They were dehydrated and malnourished and are being cared for by a volunteer who is bottle-feeding them.

Thirty-eight dogs were removed from Culwell’s home, according to NBC Los Angeles.

“If not for the good Samaritan’s actions, the puppies may not have survived much longer,” the animal services agency said in a news release.

Temperatures in the area had reached the mid-90s on Thursday, April 18.

“There is no excuse for dumping puppies,” Chris Mayer, commander of animal services who made the arrest, said in a statement. “Especially in today’s age when we or other shelters would be willing to get these animals to foster parents or rescue partners. This was a shameful act.”



Storyful and Associated Press contributed to this report.



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