by Nick Austin
Eyewitness News

HARRISON, TN (WRCB-TV)--While the recession has left many people leaving their homes for cheaper housing or to live with family, their four-legged friends often pay the price by being left behind.

"It's just so sad," said Guy Bilyeu of the Humane Educational Society (HES) of Chattanooga.  A few of his officers rescued a dog Wednesday morning in Harrison.  It was found cowering in the wet trash inside a dumpster on a rental property.  A neighbor who did not want to be identified called the HES and said the tenants moved out the previous Saturday.

"Unfortunately the dog was scared to death and was very aggressive with the officers.  So we had to put on gloves," said Bilyeu.

It has not been confirmed whether the people renting that property were the owners of the canine.  However, Bilyeu said no matter how badly the recession has affected your bank account, there is no excuse to leave your pets stranded.

"We have programs here where if you're having a hard time with the economy we'll help feed your animal," explained Bilyeu.  "We'll help take care of it for a short period of time."

So even if a trusted friend or family member is not able to care of your pet for you, the HES can help.  Bilyeu said all adoptable animals they receive are found homes at some point.

According to the HES, the dog probably walked into the dumpster through an open doorway as opposed to being tossed into it.  However, a neighbor just down the street thinks whoever left the pooch to fend for itself should get a taste of their own medicine and had this to say.

"They need to be thrown in a dumpster and left overnight in the pouring rain," exclaimed Joan Williams, a dog owner herself.