WARNING - Some people may find these photos distressing. Discretion advised

The bodies of nine puppies were callously dumped "like rubbish" on a grass verge in Marlow. 

The pups were found on the side of the road in Berwick Road on Friday, December 18. 

The RSPCA has launched an investigation after they were called by a passer-by who made the horrific discovery. 

Deputy chief inspector Becky Timberlake went to the scene. She said: “The puppies are all aged around eight-weeks-old so were no doubt destined for the Christmas market.

“I suspect they’ve come from a nearby puppy farm as there were three separate litters dumped together.

"Most were microchipped but they were not registered to any owners.

"It’s not clear why the pups died but parvovirus is rife among poorly bred puppy-farmed dogs and dealers don’t seek veterinary help as they don’t want to rouse suspicion or spend money which will impact on their profits.

“They’d rather leave puppies to suffer, grow weaker and sicker, and, eventually, die than to spend money on getting them help. And they then discard them like rubbish at the side of the road.

"It’s disgusting; these were living, breathing puppies who deserved so much better.”

The puppies were a mix of breeds, including lurcher and terrier types. 

Three were wearing collars but none had ID tags. 

They did not have any obvious injuries so it is suspected they died from a virus or infection. 

Police were called and the RSPCA has launched an investigation. 

Becky added: “We’re appealing to the public to help us track down whoever is responsible for dumping these puppies here and we fear there may be other puppies suffering who need our help.

“If you saw anything suspicious in the area on Friday or overnight on Thursday please call our appeal line on 0300 123 8018.

"We believe the puppies died between 24 and 48 hours before they were found.”

The discovery was made just 11 miles away from a similarly horrific find in November 2017, when the bodies of six puppies were found abandoned in a lay-by off the junction of Amersham Road and Bottrells Lane in Coleshill. 

The pups - three Labrador types, one Chihuahua, one Jack Russell terrier and anothert terrier - are believed to have been "waste" froma  nearby breeder trying to cash in during the run-up to Christmas. 

Nine dead puppies were found in Hogg End Lane in St Albans in February 2016 and the following month, two more were found in the same spot. 

In March 2017, the bodies of four newborn pups were found dumped in a carrier bag in Three Cherry Trees Lane in Hemel Hempstead. 

Becky added: “Every year there’s a surge in demand for puppies in the run-up to Christmas.

"People think of a cute, fluffy puppy with a bow around its neck under the tree, but this is the reality of where your puppy may have come from; this is the dark side of the Christmas puppy market.”