A SERIOUSLY ill dog which was dumped after it had given birth has since died - sparking an investigation.

An RSPCA appeal has been launched to find those responsible for dumping the dog in South Petherton.

The Jack Russell terrier was discovered collapsed by a member of the public after she had been deliberately dumped at around 11.20pm on Saturday (July 6).

The little dog was rushed to see a vet who contacted the animal welfare charity after she sadly had to be put to sleep because of the severity of her condition.

Vets believe the dog had recently given birth, with more dead pups inside her, and putrid discharge coming from her vulva.

RSPCA Inspector Jo Daniel is now keen to trace who is responsible and is appealing for information as the charity investigates.

She said: “This poor dog was in a shocking condition when she was taken to the vet. She has enlarged teats, which were producing milk, and was found with discharge coming from her genitals, which has led the vet to believe she may have had puppies just before she was found.

“We are very concerned for the welfare of these young dogs - they need their mum until at least six weeks old so they will be in need of urgent help and medical care.

“We’re pleading with anyone who has more information about her pups, or who can tells us where she came from to contact us.

“It is such a callous thing to do, to simply abandon an animal like this poor dog when she was clearly desperately in need of help."

The brown, beige and white terrier, who had a docked tail and a missing tooth, is thought to be between one and three years of age, and did not have a microchip.

Anyone who recognises the dog, or who has information that could help the investigation, should contact the RSPCA appeal line on 0300 123 8018.