IMPERIAL BEACH, Calif. — Firefighters were called to a residential fire in the 1200 block of Florida Street in Imperial Beach just after 6 a.m. Friday. Firefighters knocked flames down within 15 minutes.
After flames were extinguished, the San Diego Humane Society was called out because there were 19 animals in the home. The Humane Society says they recovered two ferrets, two chinchillas, five gerbils, and five hedgehogs as well as five dogs who had already been let out when firefighters entered.
Neighbors said the mother and daughter who live at the residence weren't home when the fire started. Once the flames were extinguished, officers with the San Diego Humane Society recovered the animals.
Neighbors who didn't want to go on camera said they have been concerned about the apparent hoarding of items and animals in the home and many have tried to help.
The smaller animals were transported to San Diego Humane Society to be closely evaluated. The animals will be reunited with the owner. The Humane Society says they will follow up with the owner to ensure the proper permits are in place for the hedgehogs and ferrets.
The Red Cross was called to see if they could assist the two women who were displaced because of the fire.