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Christmas Eve Rescue: Couple saves three puppies, mother dog on side of road

Two Central Ohio women driving home from Indiana spotted a dog trying to eat roadkill on the side of the highway, then found her three puppies in a nearby creek (WSYX/WTTE)

If it wasn't for Lacey and Audra Wheeler, three puppies and their mom might not be here.

"We think that everything happens for a reason and we are glad to get them back in and get them warm during Christmas," said Lacey Wheeler.

The Grandview Heights couple was driving back from a family celebration in Indiana on Christmas Eve when they spotted something along the road.

"It looked like a baby deer," said Lacey.

A deer turned out to be a dog.

"She was actually trying to eat some roadkill," said Lacey, "because she was pretty hungry."

They pulled over in the freezing cold and realized that dog was also a new mom.

"We pulled over to give her some cat food I had in my car and she led us to her puppies," said Lacey in a video the couple took at the rescue, "Look at these!"

They were able to get the dogs into the car.

"The puppies are cold, they were in a creek," said Lacey in that video.

The animal lovers didn't have any luck with local shelters, so they kept driving home.

"If these puppies had wandered 15 feet they would have been possibly road kill," said Audra.

They are now calling mom Red, and the three puppies Louie, Cincy and Indy. The family said mom is potty-trained and the puppies are almost there too, making them think the dogs were dumped on the side of the road.

They already have two dogs, so the Wheelers said they are working with Columbus Dog Connection.

"These guys will bring so much joy into someone's life," said Audra, "so just give them a chance, they deserve a chance."

They hope this story will inspire other families to help out. If you do have a pet you can't care for, the recommendation is to reach out to a shelter or rescue group. Never abandon your dog.

The couple said they are working with Columbus Dog Connection to find a foster home and then forever homes, once the puppies are old enough.

If you are interested in adopting, you should contact the Columbus Dog Connection.

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