Whitley County animal shelter getting help after devastating fire

WOODBINE, Ky. (WKYT) - Last week, we told you about a devastating fire that took the lives of more than 30 animals in southern Kentucky.

Four days later, the people of the Knox-Whitley Animal Shelter are still picking up the pieces, but they're getting a little help from people in Glasgow.

Barren River Animal Welfare Association (BRAWA) is taking up cash donations for the shelter in need, and they say the decision to help came from the thought of a tragedy happening to them.

"They still do what we do. They have the same passion. We're all here for the same reason. They wanted to help the animals, that's all they wanted to. We want to help them. I'm sure they would do the same thing if the roles were reversed," says Molly Taylor, Vice President of BRAWA.

Kentucky State Police say no foul play is suspected in the fire.

It happened late Friday night, causing the building's roof to cave in and forcing firefighters to end their rescue effort.

The shelter is in the town of Woodbine, which is just south of Corbin.

According to the Whitley County Sheriff's Office, 911 operators received a call about the fire at around 9:45 p.m. When a detective arrived on the scene, the detective entered the structure and with help of firefighters were able to free most of the dogs housed at the facility.

But those rescue efforts ended when the building's roof collapsed.

29 of the shelter's 37 cats were killed in the fire, because they were housed in the middle of the shelter, which firefighters could not reach.

One dog, Sassy, died in the fire. Sassy lived at the shelter and was known to greet visitors.

"She would go to nursing homes, she would go to all the events, she was the ambassador for the Knox-Whitley Animal Shelter," said Theresa Martin, a shelter volunteer. "We all thought of her as our dog."

A cause is not known. Kentucky State Police arson investigators are assisting in the search.

The Fur Ever Friends Inc., a rescue group in Corbin, posted on Facebook saying that all the animals rescued from the fire, were placed in temporary foster homes.

Donation funds for the Knox-Whitley shelter are set up at Forcht Bank in Corbin and London. The Corbin branch can be reached at 606-528-3660. The London branch can be reached at 606-864-9500. The shelter has set up a PayPal account to accept donations online.

Sunday, members of the Lexington Humane Society went to Whitley County to deliver supplies and pick up some of the dogs. They'd originally planned to take in twenty, but ten of those dogs were adopted out. The Franklin County Humane Society is helping in the effort as well.

The shelter will start to take in animals again shortly at our temporary shelter that we are creating. Several of you asked what supplies we need the most. Here is the list of what we need most urgently, which anyone can drop off at the 3 locations listed below. Thank you so much!

The Knox-Whitley Animal shelter posted on their Facebook page they mostly need water, towels, blankets, metal food bowls and water bowls, big water buckets, cat pants for little boxes, little scoops, kitty litter, cat containment crates, garbage cans, large and large garbage bags.

Drop of sites for supplies are:

Knox County Veterinary Services
314 High Street
Barbourville, KY 40906

Whitley County EMS
1002 Aviation Blvd
Williamsburg, KY 40769

The Office of William and Devanna Durham
513 18th Steet (Cumberland Falls Road)
Corbin, KY 40701

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