It has been an unusual winter for unusual animal rescue events in Steinbach.

Michelle Neufeld of Steinbach and Area Animal Rescue says they recently become involved with some heartbreaking situations where pets have been clearly abandoned outdoors.

“We had a call from St. Paul's Lutheran Church, and they had come to work in the morning, and there was a carrier at their front door with a small chihuahua it in. She was just abandoned outside the church, in a kennel, in the middle of winter.”

Neufeld says it was lucky the dog was quickly discovered.

“A human can get frost-bitten in a matter of minutes. A little dog with barely any hair, barely any meat to them, can get frozen in a matter of minutes as well,” she points out.

Taquita was taken to the vet and given a clean bill of health. Her foster family fell in love with her and decided to adopt her, Neufeld reports.

Another recent event led rescue volunteers to a couple of young cats there were abandoned outdoors.

Neufeld says they were notified on Friday by someone skating at the outdoor rink at Jake Epp Library that they thought there were a couple of abandoned cats at the shelter beside the ice.

Volunteers responded and found cat toys, a scratching post and two cats.

“There was a bag of food left for them, and there were some other boxes in the area. It was very, very evident that they were dropped off,” she says.