Chinese 'blind box' pet rescue sparks outrage

160 puppies and kittens have reportedly been rescued in China this week, in an incident that has sparked outrage there.

The animals were found in a warehouse where, according to local media, they were being shipped disguised as regular packages -- and as what are called "blind box" gifts.

Blind boxes are a popular trend across the world where consumers pay a retailer to ship them a box with a random assortment of novelty items inside. The buyer doesn't know what they're getting, such as toys or comic books.

But in this case it was local merchants selling pets over the internet, to towns up to a thousand miles away until animal welfare volunteers intervened.

Mailing any kind of live animal is illegal in China. Unfortunately, the reports say four animals were found dead and many were infected with diseases.

The courier company involved, named ZTO Express has issued a public apology and suspended some services.

Law enforcement is also, reportedly, investigating the incident.

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