HOPKINSVILLE, Ky. - A fire ripped through a mid-state animal shelter Monday, and displaced hundreds of animals inside.
More than 200 animals were inside The Christian County Animal Shelter when a fire broke out. No one was seriously hurt, including the animals, but Monday was just the beginning of a long cleanup process ahead.
The Christian County Animal Shelter might be closed, but Shelter Director Irene Grace said there is work to be done.
Flames sparked inside the shelter early Monday morning soon after the storms hit the area. Officials have not ruled out storms as the cause of the fire.
"We have a wing on the east side of the building where the dogs are housed, and as you can see we had a lot of smoke damage throughout the building," said Randy Graham, the Christian County Emergency Management Director.
It's a building that's home to more than 200 animals, some who were trapped during the fire.
"They were releasing them out into this open area," said Graham.
Employees helped get the animals to safety, but there was still a long journey ahead.
"I didn't even ask about the people, I was worried about the animals," said Grace. "All the animals are okay. We didn't have one animal die. Not one and I'm thankful for that."
The Bowling Green Humane Society will help by housing three dozen puppies and dogs.
"As soon as we heard there was a fire, we were making phone calls to see how we could help," said Teresa Cash with the Bowling Green Humane Society. "The animals need to be out of this environment where it's all sooty and all that and be in a better environment, and we're available to take them in tonight where it's warm and dry."
Grace said it is just one of the many blessings she counted on this day.
"I just thank God they're okay," said Grace. "Thanks to good people and our drills, we were able to get everybody out. There was a lot of hard praying on our way up here and just everybody's support."
Two shelter employees were treated for minor smoke inhalation on the scene.
The Christian County Animal Shelter will be closed the rest of the week, and fire marshals are expected to be on scene again Tuesday morning.
The cause of the fire has not been determined.
The dogs relocated to the Bowling Green shelter will be able to be adopted beginning Tuesday morning.
The Christian County Animal Shelter says it will be posting updates and needs on their Facebook page.