Amy Gilpatrick never imagined a trip to the store would end with a new family living in her home. But Monday while running errands, she found a litter of puppies and the mother shivering in the cold near Lake Overholser.
The mother dog was very protective of her puppies.
"At the time, we couldn't get anywhere near momma dog here," Gilpatrick said. "She would not let us near the little nest that she had made."
Gilpatrick says someone dumped the dogs and left them out in the frigid cold. She couldn't get anywhere close to the puppies at first, so she returned later with treats.
"Finally after two and a half... or three hours, she left me alone with the puppies," she said.
That's when Gilpatrick moved in and grabbed the puppies. The mother wasn't too happy.
"She was a little aggressive, but she had babies she was trying to protect," Gilpatrick said.
It's a good thing Gilpatrick took in the family. The overnight temperatures in the low twenties would have been too much.
"There's no way they could have survived outside in this cold and momma dog is obviously not suited for it either," said Jessica Justus, Gilpatrick's friend and animal activist.
A quick trip to Gilpatrick's house led to food, water, blankets, lots of love, and a new name.
"This is Eve... and she has four boys."
"It means from a snowy hill... which is where they were found," Gilpatrick explained.
The puppies are one to two weeks old. Their eyes haven't opened. Up next for them - a trip to the vet and a foster home so everyone can get healthy.
"That's where she'll stay until the puppies are old enough to be spayed and neutered, and then everyone will get adopted out," Justus said.
But that won't happen until after the holidays. Which means Gilpatrick's house will be extra full for Christmas.
"Yeah, yeah, we got a family for Christmas."