THE EVERGLADES, Fla. - They're helpless animals that were left for dead by their owners and it's happening in our own backyard.
Monday night the Contact 5 Investigators uncovered a growing problem of animal abandonment in our community.
The story has sparked outrage and concern and has caused many people to take action.
Over the past 24 hours, both rescue groups have received thousands of comments online, along with hundreds of calls and emails from people across South Florida.
Amy Roman, with the group 100+ Abandoned Dogs of Everglades Florida said she's receiving a lot of interest from people looking to volunteer their time. However, she said right now the group most needs monetary donations for medical treatment and homes for the animals.
Right now, Roman's group has 61 rescue dogs sitting in animal hospitals waiting to be adopted. Many of them are the dogs NewsChannel 5 profiled in its Contact 5 investigation.
"I live for people to call me and say ‘I want to adopt your dog' and then when I go to their house and do a home check and see my dog happy after rescuing it from hell out here, I live for that," said Roman.
Roman and her group of volunteers make trips to the Everglades frequently to perform rescue missions.
The other group, Chain of Love Abandoned Dogs Everglades , started when volunteer Mirta Maltes found a starving dog on the side of the road a few years ago.
"That dog really touched my heart and I struggled so much to find a rescue to help and I couldn't find anyone," said Maltes.
So she decided to start patrolling the streets and rescuing the animals herself, one by one.
"If it's a pet that has been in a house that's not street smart, they go totally frantic, what they do is just run and run on the road and they get killed," she said.
Here's information for both rescue groups profiled: