(FOX 9) - A dog and a litter of orphaned puppies are now family after being united by tragedy.
Twin Cities-based Ruff Start Rescue jumped into action when Poppy, the mother of 10 puppies, died on July 8 unexpectedly after giving birth. So, volunteers split up the siblings and had volunteers bottle feeding throughout the night.
Unfortunately, another dog mom, Pepper, lost her litter of puppies unexpectedly. Pepper was devastated and grew very depressed.
Then, the volunteers decided to try and pair the two up: the mom who lost her puppies and the puppies who lost their mom.
"Immediately, when we picked [Poppy] up, the puppies were in a kennel right next to her in the back of the car and her tail just started wagging," said Lexi Johnson, a Ruff Start Rescue foster. "She just perked up."
The group said Pepper accepted all the puppies, and now they are all thriving.
"Nothing short of a miracle, it's incredible. For not only unfortunately Poppy passing, but then Pepper's babies passing and Pepper taking on Poppy's babies was just incredible," said Johnson.
Pepper cares for 10 orphaned pups.