CRYSTAL LAKES, Mo. -- A handful of tiny puppies are all warm and safe Wednesday after being left on the side of the road last week in rural Clay County.
A small animal rescue group said they are some of the lucky ones but said abandoning animals is a growing problem.
Two puppies find their way around inside a Northland home. Bailey and Buddy are six-week-old border collie/lab mixes. They tire easily and find a comfortable spot on a living room pillow to get some shut-eye. This is a long way from where these two were on Friday.
A couple driving on Highway Y in Crystal Lakes, just outside of Excelsior Springs, Mo. found Buddy and Bailey with three other pups in the frigid temperatures.
"They found them in a plastic storage tote, a clear plastic storage tote with a lid on it and she said there were holes poked in the lid and in the side," Marilyn Hughes said.
She is the founder of Excelsior Springs Friends of Animals, a small animal rescue organization that was called to help.
Hughes said animal abandonment happens all the time, all year long.
"We receive calls, many, many calls, about cats and dogs. I'd say we receive several a month, as do other animal rescue organizations," Hughes said.
But she said the fact that her smaller organization is fielding these calls more often, is a sign of something else.
"I think that it really shows what the larger picture is, that there are more and more pets being abandoned," she said.
Hughes said they need more foster homes to house the many more animals being abandoned.
She said fortunately for Buddy, Bailey, and the other pups rescued, they have a foster home that's nice and cozy with the Roberts family.
"They get along great with the dogs, the kids. Cats they seem to do fine with too," Katherine Roberts said.
All they need now is a permanent home. Hughes said the puppies are ready for adoption in mid-January. Those interested in adopting them can visit http://www.esfoa.org.
Hughes said call an animal shelter if you find abandoned animals. She said if workers there can't help you, they can at least put you in contact with a smaller organization, like hers, that can.