COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) — Part of living in Colorado is that the line between wildlife and domestic life can get blurry.

That’s what led to a mix-up in Colorado Springs.

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Chalk it up to folks trying to do the right thing, but making an honest mistake.

Colorado Springs Firefighters rescued what they thought were puppies trapped in a storm drain.

They pulled eight tiny, black puppies out of a manhole, but mom got away.

The only problem, it turns out these are not the type of puppies everyone thought they were — they are actually Red Fox kits.

(credit: Colorado Springs Fire Department)

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Coming across a litter of them is not uncommon especially right now.

“This time of year there are a lot of animals that are starting to have their young, and they have them in small dens that are places that we can encounter when we’re recreating in the outdoors like we like to do,” Travis Sauder Colorado Parks and Wildlife District Wildlife Manager said.

The puppies were turned over to The Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region and that’s where a vet determined that they are not dogs, but foxes.

So, instead of going the shelter they’re headed home.

“These animals are going to be put back where we found them hoping that the mother is still in the area and can pick up the normal duties like she would. If the mom’s not around anymore we can take them to a licensed re-hab,” Sauder said.

The lesson here is that if you see an animal you think needs help, never try to intervene yourself.

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Call an animal expert because you might not know what you are looking at.

Michael Abeyta