An animal rescue network will have to start from scratch after losing 44 boxes of donations destined for animals in need.

Norway House Animal Rescue Network relies on donations from animal lovers to help feed and find homes for abandoned and neglected dogs rescued from northern Manitoba.

Their latest was drive was thwarted after thieves stole almost 50 boxes of supplies from the home of a volunteer.

“The boxes were lined up against the wall,” said Jill Britton, a volunteer with the rescue network.

When Britton arrived home on Tuesday night, they were gone.

“I sat in my car stunned as to why it was sitting empty,” said Britton.

The boxes contained hundreds of dollars worth of food and grooming supplies for dogs in need. They were all donated by local animal lovers.

Britton was going to drive the much-needed supplies to the rescue shelter on Dec. 7.

Britton said she has stored the donations out in the open near her home before, and has never had any problems.

Britton said she doesn’t want to press charges. She just wants the items back for the dogs that need them.

“There’s a pretty big overpopulation issue,” said Britton. She said Norway House, the community the dogs are rescued from, needs education and spay and neuter recommendations so that animals are cared for properly.

The dogs that have been rescued need those supplies, she said.

“If you could give it back, no questions asked, drop it off. Leave. Don’t say a word,” said Britton.

Anyone interested in helping the Norway House Animal Rescue Network can visit their website.