Coastal Animal Rescue in Murrells Inlet had received more than 68 applications by Wednesday morning to adopt three puppies that were found in a bag last weekend in a stormwater drain near South Bay Street in Georgetown, shelter volunteer Karen Nierengarten said.
The applications will be reviewed by the shelter's adoption committee, Nierengarten said, which will use criteria such as past veterinary use by applicants and approval of their landlords to have animals in deciding who is to get the animals.
"It's a serious decision, taking on an animal," she said. "People need to sit back and realize they're taking on a big responsibility."
The puppies, two males and a female, are about 5 weeks old and are doing very well. Nierengarten said they spend their days "eating, sleeping and running amok in their little area."
The three are among 481 cats, 30 dogs and one female opossum and her litter of newborns now at the no-kill, no-cage shelter.
The puppies were found by 10-year-old Michael Hardwick, who heard them squealing when he was walking with a friend. They had been put into a bag and shoved back into the pipe.
He took the puppies to his grandmother's house, cleaned them and gave them some milk. The family turned them over to the shelter Sunday.
Nierengarten said a decision on who will get to adopt the puppies could be made in days.
She said the shelter staff will want to be sure to the best of its ability that the puppies will go to good homes.