A Council Bluffs animal shelter posted on social media Wednesday that they had a young puppy that had been dumped at Lake Zorinsky.
The man who abandoned the pup is still unknown, but volunteers say the dog's life would have been in danger if left out overnight.
Volunteers from the Muddy Paws Second Chance Rescue say this seven-to-nine week-old black lab mix would have frozen to death in near-freezing temperatures overnight after it was left to fend for itself Wednesday.
A rescue volunteer saw a middle-aged Caucasian man walk the dog into the woods, walk back out without it, and then drive away in a maroon SUV.
"The volunteer watched to assess the situation for a little bit, then out ran the little puppy without the owner," volunteer Heather Noyes said.
Noyes says the dog found at Lake Zorinsky had a collar but no identification tags with a possible owner's name or address. The pup will be away from the cold conditions and stay indoors with another volunteer Wednesday night.
"The puppy is in a foster home right now and will be receiving vet care just to make sure it's healthy," Noyes said. "It appears to be very skinny and definitely would not have lasted long in the impending colder weather that is coming upon us."
Despite temperatures near 40 degrees early Wednesday evening, walkers at Zorinsky like Renee Kucera were shocked to hear about what happened.
"If you are a person who makes a commitment to have an animal then that's your commitment," Kucera said. "It's like if you have children, that's your commitment."
Muddy Paws Rescue encourages people who either find strays or for some reason can no longer keep their animals to take them to the humane society. They have a 24-hour drop box and will always accept your animal.