FLORIDA KEYS (FOX 13) - While firefighters were surveying the inside of a damaged Florida Keys home, they were surprised to find not only debris, but a dehydrated deer.
The encounter occurred on Monday morning. One firefighter, Lt. Nicholas Johnson, with the Broward Sheriff's Office Fire Rescue, said he didn't know who was more startled: the deer or himself?
"It looked a little thirsty so we went and got a couple bottles of water," he said. "We couldn't believe how much water it drank, but it drank four bottles of water."
Johnson and other firefighters consulted an officer with Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, who said the storm surge from Hurricane Irma mixed saltwater into most of the freshwater supply.
After the deer was hand-fed four bottles of water, the buck had the strength to run off.
"It's nice to help out the wildlife as well as the citizens of Monroe County." Johnson said.
Monroe County officials stressed this was an "extraordinary circumstance involving a distressed deer and a trained first responder. Residents of the Florida Keys should contact Florida Fish and Wildlife if they come across a deer in distress."