DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Officials with the Durham Fire Department say that six cats died and more than a dozen other animals were hospitalized after a fire at an animal hospital.
A call came in just after 9:50 p.m. Tuesday for a fire at the Falconbridge Animal Hospital, located at 1401 W. N.C. Highway 54 in Durham. When officials arrived on scene, flames were seen coming from the back of the establishment.
As a result of the fire, 15 dogs and an iguana were transported to a 24-hour veterinarian office and are recovering from smoke inhalation.
The animals inside the animal hospital were all being boarded while their pet parents were out of town.
Officials on scene told CBS 17 that the fire was extinguished Tuesday night but it rekindled around 2 a.m. and crews had to come back out.
Firefighters were still on scene as of 5:30 a.m. Wednesday as they worked to put out any remaining hot spots. The scene was once again cleared by 6 a.m.
The cause of the fire has not been determined at this time but officials on scene said they believe the fire was fueled through oxygen tanks that were inside the hospital.
Falconbridge staff were at the scene Wednesday morning grieving and comforting those who lost their pets in the fire.
“The entire Falconbridge staff is devastated by what has happened here, especially with the loss of life. As you can imagine, people who devote their professional and personal lives to the care of animals are just really concerned about this and their hearts go out to those six felines families where those cats did not survive,” said public relations consultant Judi Anderson.
Contact has been made with all the pet owners except for two of them.
For pet owners who had appointments Wednesday at Falconbridge can call Village Vet in the Governors Village shopping plaza in Chapel Hill with any of their questions. Their phone number is (919) 967-4779.
Officials say no employees or firefighters were injured in the fire.
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