Eight dogs stuffed into small crates and left outside in the cold with only plastic tarp protecting them were rescued by the Monmouth County SPCA.
The MCSPCA's Humane Law Enforcement Division responded to a call from the Neptune City Police Department about excessive barking after midnight on Saturday, they said.
When officials arrived at the apartment complex, police heard the barking and whining from outside.
"We were prepared for the worst," the SPCA said in a statement.
"That's when they found the eight dogs and puppies who were living in their own urine and feces and without access to food, water or any source of heat.
"Despite them all cuddled together, they were still trembling from the freezing temperatures."
The eight dogs rescued from the scene were so relieved that they "drank and ate ravenously when we offered them food and water" the SPCA said on its Facebook page.
The MCSPCA brought the dogs and puppies to their shelter and provided them with blankets, food and water and a warm place to sleep.
Their medical team then began their assessments and found that all of the dogs were riddled with intestinal parasites in addition to their overgrown nails, skin sores, dirty coats and ear and skin infections.
Officials said that one of the adult dogs in particular was covered in scars and wounds, which is sometimes an indication of being used as a bait-dog in dog fighting.
The dogs will remain in the shelter, officials said and are unable to be released for adoption, until this matter is resolved in court, which can sometimes take months.
"While with us, these dogs will be treated, emotionally and physically, with the utmost level of care and compassion," the SPCA said in a statement.
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