LIGHTHOUSE POINT (CBS4) – It’s a heart wrenching problem, dogs of all shapes and sizes are being dumped in the Florida Everglades.

Whether it’s the economy or cruelty, you can see these sick and suffering animals roaming the outskirts of Homestead and the Redlands.

But a group of volunteers has been feeding and trapping these abandoned animals.

Last weekend they spent ten hours in the pouring rain coaxing a dog they nicknamed ‘Candy’ to safety.

“We’ve rescued 50 since July,” says Amy Restucci who helped rescue Candy.

“I have no words to describe what I see when I go there. New faces every time. Emaciated to the point, if we didn’t show up that minute the dog would die,” said Restucci.

Some of the animals have been nursed back to health at the Acacia Animal Hospital in Lighthouse Point.

“A lot of these kids coming in are scared to death because they’ve had to fight for themselves.  It takes a special home to fix them up,” said veterinarian Mark Stevens.

“They weren’t born in the wild.  They’re not used to foraging for themselves.  They don’t know how to hunt so they wither into starvation,” added practice manager Lauren Liutermoza.

“We need veterinarians to step in, the community to step up.  We need homes for these dogs, we desperately need help from the community,” says Amy Restucci.

If you would like to help either through a donation or adopt one of these rescued dogs go Facebook and search 100+abandoneddogseverglades or go to

Comments (19)
  1. Camille says:

    I am so proud to be a part of this “Chain of Love.” We need fosters, adopters & donations!! Thank you Amy Restucci my sweet friend & No Kill Nation!!!!

  2. Camille says:

    I would also like to thank Mirta Maltes who goes there twice a day to feed these babies!!!! xoxoxox

  3. doggpound says:

    send them to Mike Vick…

    1. NOTSONUTSO says:

      We’d rather send you!

  4. sp says:

    There is a special place in hell for animal abusers. And dropping a dog off in the Everglades because you don’t want it or can’t be responsible counts.

  5. Diane says:

    I am so glad that the news told of this story or I would of never know of the cruelty that continues to shock me daily. Animals are the best of humanity and for those who are cruel to those who cannot defend themselves will get their just rewards. Hell would not be enough for me. I would want them to suffer the same fates as those poor dogs had to. Keep up the good fight and know that for every bad person there is a good one. We have proof of that bc people like us exist. I never understand how you can look at a wagging tail and walk away from it. These are people who do not know love-I pray for them too, to find the hearts that they lost somewhere along the way the minute they left these poor dogs to die. Thank all those who are out there helping. I have three dogs all who had been abandoned. No human has ever made my heart so full. love to the no kill nation!!!!!

  6. Cynthia says:

    Am so glad to see some press getting involved to spread the word more. Sure hoping some Veterianians will step up to the plate and donate their time to the cause. We have donated supplies hoping that it helped some. Thanks to The “Chain of Love” for that you have done and are still doing.

  7. FlSux says:

    Perhaps they can get these pain in the butt sheriffs to help out with this–it may be the only worthwhile thing they accomplish in their entire career.

  8. Anna says:

    On October 3, The New Barker dog magazine interviewed Debbie with The No Kill Nation in Deerfield Beach on The SkipShow radio program. She enlightened us on the plight of these dogs and the volunteers trying to save them. As the editor of The New Barker, I continue to be amazed at the strength of humans, who, as Pam Backer with Hillsborough County Animal Services said to me recently, “eat the sins of our society.”

    1. opinion. says:

      I live in Canada and all I can do is donate money…I wish I could do more! This cruelty just makes me want to cry!

  9. Carrie Thomas says:

    thanks for doing this story of the dogs dumped in the Everglades! More need help so spread the word!

  10. Elise says:

    I would love to help! Who do I need to get in contact with to do so?

  11. Wolf Wolfenstein says:

    bet it was a craigs crime list dog reseller who dumped his excess inventory

  12. Acacia Animal Hospital says:

    Acacia Animal Hospital in Lighthouse Point, FL has some of the dogs rescued from the everglades by No Kill Nation. We are trying to find loving forever homes for these pups and raise money for their Veterinary Care. If you are interested in adopting or donating to these rescue dogs call us at Acacia Animal Hospital 954-942-5955 and visit us on facebook at Acacia Animal Hospital.

  13. Denise says:

    Thank you so much for what you do. I too am amazed by the continued cruelty to such unconditionally loving creatures. We have just rescued our 8th abused furbaby (not all of them are still with us), and he is our first puppy mill rescue. I thought I had seen and heard it all (our babies have some horrific stories), but I was wrong! This poor 9# dog is so unhealthy, but like the cardiologist said, his life now is a “quintillion” times better than it ever was in that cage. So for those of you who do what you do and those that adopt & rescue, know that your efforts are not in vain. When you look into those loving eyes, they know that someone loved them!

  14. nate says:

    Where is the boa and python rescue?

  15. Camille says:

    Please join the Facebook Page titled “100+ Abandoned Dogs of Everglades Florida.” Thank You!

  16. Margarita Fletes says:

    This is a big labor of love. I found out about this abandonment of dogs through my son’s therapist when she told me that a client of hers has taken a dog there. So she wanted to know if I wanted the dog if she and her social worker friend (dog lover) could find the dog, I told her yes without exhitation, and they spent like 2-3 hours looking for her until they brought her to me.

    1. Denise says:

      THANK YOU Margarita!!! You’ll get so many big slobbery loving kisses, you’ll wonder what you ever did before her:) As for the “client”, someone needs to drop her off in the Everglades and not look back!

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