"At first we thought, are they fox pups or something?" Clare Oakley told 9 News.
Instead the couple had unknowingly discovered a litter of five 12-week-old puppies which had been abandoned in chilly conditions.
"To think that someone had dumped such small and innocent creatures on such a cold night on a dark side road where they might not necessarily have a chance of getting found was really disheartening," she said.
The couple took the five boxer-cross dogs home and later took them to a animal rehoming centre Scruffer Lovers.
Hefty fine for dumping offence
The person responsible for dumping the dogs is still unknown, however anyone found guilty of this offence in the state can face a $20,000 fine or up to two years imprisonment, under South Australia's Animal Welfare Act.
"It was lucky that they were rescued by the people but we would encourage anyone in a position where they can't look after their pet to ask for help," Andrea Lewis from the RSPCA said.
Dogs are being surrendered at an alarming rate across the country, with the surging cost of living and housing crisis forcing Aussies to give up their pets as many are no longer able to afford basic care for the animal.
"In a matter of one hour there were multiple phone calls and 33 animals people asked to surrender ... There's been a real influx," Bree Sands from SMART Animal Sanctuary and Rehoming Centre in NSW, told Yahoo earlier this month.
Pet owners often resort to dumping their animals as a surrender fee is required by rehoming centres.
"Maybe they couldn't find a home, maybe they just couldn't afford to look after them any longer," Kylie Bennier from Scruffer Lovers told 9 News.
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