Authorities in a small Kansas town were left reeling after they were called to a hoarding situation and uncovered 63 dogs in the basement.
Most of the dogs were dachshunds and chihuahuas, and many of them are pregnant.
"Yesterday, these dogs were in utter darkness. Many of them in the basement. We found some of them in cupboards; they were trying to hide them," said Theresa Strader of the National Mill Dog Rescue.
The dogs inside the house were fighting each other to stay alive because space and resources were so sparse.
"We brought in 63 in total: 51 adults and 12 baby puppies," said Theresa. "They'll be available as we get through their medical intake, and there's a lot of nutritional issues that these dogs had. They weren't really feeding them dog food. They were feeding them oats and some kind of powdered baby food."
Together with local authorities the National Mill Dog Rescue rescued the dogs after a slew of complaints from neighbors.
But now these dogs are thriving and will be up for adoption once they are fully recovered.
"I was just watching him today. He just rolls around in his bed upside down and he naps. You can just tell he's grateful," says Theresa. "He's not stressed anymore, and when we see that, that makes every single bit of this hard work worth every second of it. He'll be a completely different dog in a couple of days."
"I look at these dogs and I think, 'Yesterday and every day prior to that you lived in a virtual hell,' she said. "Today, you see the forgiving and resilient spirit of dogs."
The names of the couple who owned the house are not being released, as the investigation is ongoing. As of yet, they have not been charged with any criminal acts.