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These Puppies Survived For Five Days In An Air Pocket Under An Avalanche

Rescuers in Italy erupted in cheers Monday after the puppies were discovered in an air pocket of a luxury hotel buried under tons of snow.

Posted on January 23, 2017, at 5:48 p.m. ET

Emergency crews on Monday rescued three sheepdog puppies five days after they were buried in an avalanche that destroyed an Italian hotel.

Italian Firefighters via AP

Rescue workers cheered after finding the puppies, which renewed hope that they still might find survivors trapped inside Hotel Rigopiano, near Farindola in central Italy.

While nine people have been rescued since the avalanche hit, there are still 23 others missing as Italy's fire brigade continues to tunnel into tons of snow. Authorities on Monday also raised the official death toll to seven, the Associated Press reported.

Firefighters told reporters the three puppies were found in an air pocket in the hotel's boiler room.

Marisa Basilavecchia via AP

The puppies were born Dec. 4 to Nuvola and Lupo, two sheepdogs that lived at the hotel, officials said.

Facebook: hotelrigopiano

Nuvola and Lupo were found alive by a bartender who knew the dogs, and they were wandering the town after the avalanche, officials said.

So after days of digging, and the scene becoming more grim, the discovery of the puppies provided a big boost to morale, local media reported.

Italian Firefighters via AP
Italian Firefighters via AP

Dog family, separated by a devastating avalanche, reunited.

Marisa Basilavecchia via AP

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.