A Slovakian man is facing animal cruelty charges after police discovered 47 puppies stashed inside his van during a routine motorway traffic stop.
The animals were being transported in carton boxes or allowed to roam free on the floor as the van was being driven at least 1250 miles from Slovakia to Spain.
The 31-year-old driver admitted he had been driving non-stop for several hours, with the puppies lying in their own filth in the back of his van.
Cramped: Austrian police found 47 puppies crammed into the back of a van being driven from Slovakia to Spain after a routine traffic stop
A vet said the 47 animals included five King Charles Spaniels, one Jack Russell Terrier, eight miniature Pinschers, four Pomeranians, one French Bulldog, four Chihuahuas, three wire-haired Dachshunds, 20 Maltese and one Labrador.
He said the youngest of the animals was just five weeks old.
The van was stopped by police officers on the A2 motorway near Kaiserswald, in Austria, on Wednesday.
Cruelty: The animals were as young as five weeks old and were kept in cartons or on the van floor
It had been driven without a rest for at least three hours before it was stopped and the total journey from Bratislava to the closest Spanish city of Barcelona is 1242 miles - or at least 19 hours of solid driving.
The puppies were said to be in reasonable health and have been handed over to an animal shelter in Austria's Styrian province.
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