Children live in dog kennel after mother abandons family

The undated photo shows the children living in the dog kennel prior to being rescued.

Two young children in China's Anhui province have been living in a dog kennel run by their grandfather, after their mother left the family.

Subsequently abandoned by their father, the two children, aged six and four years old, had gone to live with their grandfather, who could not afford to provide proper housing for them. The children were rescued by a local community organisation after their plight was highlighted by concerned neighbours, reported Beijing Times.

Prior to their rescue, they had been living with about 50 dogs, ate the dogs' food and sometimes leftovers from a local market during the day. They drank water from a nearby river. At night, they would sleep in a broken van.

The illegal dog kennel has since been confiscated by authorities, and the children are being taken care of by a local family.

The undated photo shows the children now living with a foster family

The children's grandfather, Yu Congqiu, explained that he locked the children up in the dog kennel because he was concerned for their safety.

He also did not earn enough from running his illegal dog kennel to raise his grandchildren. The children's mother reportedly left the family, and this prompted their father to send the minors away.

The voluntary organisation are helping to find homes for both the children and the dogs, as well as raise funds for their grandfather. The family is also receiving help to fill in forms to get government aid.