A TOOWOOMBA animal organisation saved three dogs from death row, only to have two of them die from a severe and painful illness.
Off The Chain K9 Rescue Qld founder Jess Otto rescued three dogs from a rural pound and transported them to Toowoomba in hopes of finding them foster homes and forever homes.
Less than 48 hours ago, things were looking up for these puppies heading to better lives.
But on the trip to Toowoomba two of the dogs started showing signs of severe canine parvovirus, or more commonly known as parvo.
Parvo is a highly contagious viral illness that affects dogs.
One didn't make the trip and Ms Otto ended the suffering of the other one as it was too sick.
The heart broken Ms Otto begged pet owners to vaccinate their dogs.
"Not even 30 hours ago these dogs were happy and energetic and running around their pen in the pound," she said.
"They showed symptoms around 9am and then worsened along the way to Toowoomba. With no vets in that direction our transporter had to just floor it and hope he made it.
"One perished in the car and the other was fading before my eyes. His test came back positive and so I chose to euthanise him.
"His suffering until that point had been short-lived, but brutal. There was no coming back from it and no discussion to be had. He was cuddled into his dead friend's corpse for comfort."
The third dog tested negative for parvo and has shown no symptoms and has since been transferred into foster care.
Ms Otto said she was devastated she lost two dogs to an avoidable illness.
"I have a broken heart. My team is shattered. We will hold our breath to see if this boy makes it through his quarantine period," she said.
"Please vaccinate your dogs. Parvo is here to kill your dogs as painfully as possible.
"If you're in Toowoomba there is no excuse. Out there, in rural towns, it's a little different - parvo is everywhere.
"It's a constant thing. It's like paralysis ticks. Unless you can control all wild cats, possum and birds, you live in a tick area. Same as parvo. Even if your dog never leaves the yard, it can still be brought into your yard.
"If you're not vaccinating I've go to wonder when was the last time a vet checked your dog. Does it have dental pain? A cancer you haven't seen? A vaccination is fantastic in itself but it also comes with a health check too."
She said dogs needed booster needles to stay healthy because its puppy needle won't cover it for its lifetime.
Ms Otto is looking to work with councils and vets to bring mobile clinics to rural areas, in the hopes more animals will get the check-ups and vaccinations they need.
"I'm so sorry for those poor puppies who had to die like this. I hope your story reaches many and encourages action," she said.
"I promise to keep pushing for change and to bring more opportunity for vet visits to your hometown so maybe this won't happen again."
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.