WILSON, N.C. -- A Wilson animal shelter is searching for justice after finding a dog, left outside, neglected in the bitter cold and clinging to life.
It happened Wednesday going into the coldest night we've seen so far this year.
A Good Samaritan spotted a pit bull outside of a home, chained to a crate, starved and nearly frozen to death. He called Max and Della Fitzgerald, the owners of non-profit, no-kill shelter For the Love of Dogs NC.
"He didn't turn his back," said Max about that man who called. "That's what's important. He said,' I'll do something about this. I'll call for help.'"
Max went to the home to check it out and thought the dog was already dead.
Once back at their shelter, a vet began pumping warm fluids through the dog's body. Three hours later, her temperature was finally registering on the thermometer. The vet and volunteers named her Elsa, after the popular character from Disney's Frozen.
Elsa is now one of more than 100 dogs at their shelter. Their weekly clinic serves low income families who still want to own a dog but can't afford visits to the vet. At For the Love of Dogs NC, they can keep their pet's health at little to no cost.
Fitzgerald said that's just one of many reasons there's no excuse for leaving a pet out in the cold.
"Cause they're living creatures," he said. "They don't deserve that."
With Elsa's picture and story posted all over social media since Wednesday night, people have been responding in sadness and outrage.
The Fitzgeralds have yet to hear from Elsa's owner but Max is talking with an attorney and will work with local animal control about pressing charges.
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Wilson dog rescued from the bitter cold