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Dozens of animals rescued from Maryland house fire

An official said rescuers saved 32 dogs, five cats, six parakeets, two hedgehogs, two mice, one rat, as well as chickens and chinchillas.
Dozens of animals rescued from Maryland house fire
Posted at 12:37 PM, Apr 18, 2024

A love of animals perhaps went too far after dozens were trapped inside a Maryland home when it caught fire this week.

It was around 9 a.m. Tuesday when Shelia Elliott walked onto her front porch in Taneytown like usual. Except this time something was different across the street.

"I saw black smoke coming out of the window, and called 911," said Elliott. “I heard all the animals barking and yelping. The cops did finally get here. Everyone's yelling, trying to get doors and windows open."

At that point, another emergency call was made, this time to the Humane Society of Carroll County.

"So we removed 32 dogs, there were approximately five cats, six parakeets, there were chickens and chinchillas, two hedgehogs, one rat, and two mice," said Karen Baker, Humane Society of Carroll County executive director.

With all of them living under one roof, Baker said it was a traumatizing experience for the animals.

"Of course, just the fear of the smoke and noise from the fire department and having strangers come in and remove them, that can be pretty scary," said Baker.

SEE MORE: 5 dogs reunited with Indiana soldiers who helped rescue them

"They didn't want to come out because some of them apparently had never been out," Elliott added. "So the daylight and outside was scary."

Neighbors said they knew a few animals lived there, but not this many. 

"We would see three, four, sometimes five in the yard," said Elliott. "But never that many dogs, and we usually seen the same dogs in the yard."

Now the Humane Society is faced with the obstacle of getting these animals a healthy, happier new life.

"We recognize that they are going to need a safe place and a soft place to land and we are working on everything we can do to make that easier for them," said Baker.

But that's something she said doesn't come cheap.

"Spay, neuter, a lot of them will need dental, the core vaccines and microchips, de-wormers and normal medications," said Baker. "[It] is an exorbitant amount of money.”

With a long road to recovery, any kind of donation or help is needed.

“Having great compassion for the owners that have just lost everything and having compassion for the animals that need reassurance that life is going to be great from here on out,” said Elliott.

You can visit the Humane Society of Carroll County's website to make a donation. 

This story was originally published by Ashley McDowell at Scripps News Baltimore.

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