3 Puppies Found Alive 5 Days After Avalanche Buries Italy Hotel

Firefighters hold three puppies that were found alive in the rubble of the avalanche-hit Hotel Rigopiano, near Farindola, central Italy, Monday, Jan. 22, 2017. Emergency crews digging into an avalanche-slammed hotel were cheered Monday by the discovery of three puppies who had survived for days under tons of snow, giving them new hope for the 23 people still missing in the disaster. (Italian Firefighters via AP)
Firefighters hold three puppies that were found alive in the rubble of the avalanche-hit Hotel Rigopiano, near Farindola, central Italy, Monday, Jan. 22, 2017. Emergency crews digging into an avalanche-slammed hotel were cheered Monday by the discovery of three puppies who had survived for days under tons of snow, giving them new hope for the 23 people still missing in the disaster. (Italian Firefighters via AP)

Rescuers digging out an Italian hotel buried by an avalanche discovered three puppies that survived for five days, raising hopes for 23 people still missing in the wall of snow.

Search teams have been working around the clock since Wednesday, when up to 16 feet of snow careened down a mountain and engulfed the Rigopiano Hotel near the resort town of Farindola. Central Italy had been slammed with up to three feet of falling snow when a series of severe earthquakes rocked the region, triggering the avalanche.

The discovery of the shaggy Abruzzo sheepdog pups means pockets of air could remain in the collapsed, luxury hotel.

“It’s an important sign of life, which gives us hope,” firefighter Fabio Jerman told Agence France-Presse.

Click here to read more.

SOURCE: USA Today, John Bacon