HOMESTEAD (KDKA) — Nearly 20 dogs were brought to Pittsburgh from Mississippi after being rescued from deplorable conditions.

Animal Lifeline Pittsburgh coordinated the effort to bring the dogs here to local families.

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A behind-the-scenes look that rarely gets witnessed firsthand was a heartwarming moment in Homestead.

The Animal Lifeline is a sister organization to the Mississippi animal group that helped rescue nearly 200 dogs from a suspected puppy mill in Mississippi. The room was full of families tonight waiting for the rescue dogs.

Most of the dogs were Chihuahuas and had been rescued with the help of the Tunica Humane Society, a partner agency to the Animal Lifeline Pittsburgh in Homestead. The dogs at the puppy mill, according to rescuers, were in some of the worst conditions imaginable.

“The stories keep getting worse, I mean you know we have dogs on this transport that were 2-3 pounds and thrown out of a moving vehicle,” said Lynda Mank, the director of Animal Lifeline Pittsburgh. “Other dogs that were tied to a tree.”

Eager, happy families provided an adorable scene of cuddly puppies taken from their crates and swept into the arms of people who will care for them.

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The dogs were driven to Pittsburgh on Monday to meet their new foster families. Other dogs were rescued from hoarding situations and severe abuse. Animal Lifeline said when they were first found, the dogs’ condition was heartbreaking.

Now dogs like Mary will no longer have pain or heartbreak.

Local families, with their kids in tow, from Jefferson Hills to the North Hills raced to Homestead to bring these dogs into loving homes.

“It’s rewarding to be able to give them the love and attention that they are so deserving of,” said Jennifer Brady. “They came from horrible conditions, horrible start in life. They are here to get their forever homes and they are here to live their best lives.”

Animal Lifeline Pittsburgh helps at-risk pets here and across the United States. They are a foster-based agency so all of these beautiful dogs will need to be adopted eventually.

For now, Animal Lifeline says their foster families will teach them how to be dogs for the first time and get to experience what it’s like to be loved for the first time.

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For more information, those interested can visit Animal Lifeline Pittsburgh’s website.