An abandoned cat and her kittens left to die in a crisp box have been saved after being found by a dog.
Vader the dog sniffed out the mother and her two kittens in a dumped Doritos box in the bushes in Pallister Park in Middlesbrough on her late night walk.
The RSPCA said the animals had no food or water and had been left to die.
Owner Sharon Smith saw Vader nudging the box and whining so she took it home and opened it. She said she was “appalled” to find the animals inside.
“When I pulled off the tape and opened the box I saw the cat and kittens inside and I was shocked. They were terrified.
“It was a small box for them, it was just heartbreaking.
“It’s disgusting that anyone would dump them like that,” Ms Smith said.
The tortoiseshell cat and two ginger tabby kittens were taken to the vets and are now in the care of the RSPCA.
Ms Smith said: “I don’t know what would have happened to those poor kittens if Vader hadn’t found the box, I dread to think.
“Thank goodness for Vader, she really is a hero”.