On the evening of September 15, Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando experienced a devastating fire at our Orlando location on Conroy Road. The fire was first reported by staff from Orange County Animal Services and police and firefighters were quickly on the scene. Knowing that there were animals inside, rescue personnel rushed in and started to pull out animals as others battled the towering blaze. We are so grateful to the heroes who saved 45 cats and 26 dogs that night. We are absolutely heartbroken over the loss of 17 cats from smoke inhalation.
The fire started in the public clinic portion of the building. We are still waiting to hear a final determination of the cause, but it is suspected to be electrical. The building is a near total loss. The roof has caved in on all of the public clinic and a vast majority of the shelter. Sprinkler systems were in place in the cat portion of the building and we believe that this may have helped keep the 7 cats alive that staff found the morning after the fire. A moment of joy in the midst of so much devastation.
We know the community is hurting as much as our staff and volunteers. However, we know we will get through this together. The outpouring of support has been astounding! More than 12,000 people and businesses have made monetary and physical donations to Pet Alliance! Daily deliveries of pet food and supplies have us bursting at the seams! We are grateful for the people who have donated and those who have stepped up to provide us with space to store the donations.
Over the next few weeks, Pet Alliance will be working to find and secure a long-term temporary space to set up operations in Orlando. Our goal is to continue to provide surrender and adoption services and foster support to as many animals as possible. We will likely be utilizing more offsite adoption locations and finding creative solutions to continue to serve the community.
Long-term, Pet Alliance will be building a new permanent facility. The organization started the process of securing land and launching a campaign to raise money for a new building more than two years ago. We own a plot of land on John Young Parkway and will expedite the fundraising and building process in the wake of the fire.
How You Can Help
We are asking the public to please refrain from sending any additional physical donations (pet food and supplies) until we are able to sort through and organize what we have. Thank you again to all who have donated!
We still need monetary donations to help fund our intermediate operations and to help us build the new building. General donations can be made via our website or sent in to the address at the bottom of this email. If you have any questions about donations, please contact Cathy Rodgers, Development Director at [email protected] or 407-489-1497.
Giving Day, scheduled for Tuesday, September 28, will still take place. We are looking forward to using the day to feature some of our amazing sponsors and supporters and thank everyone for their help! Watch our social media to learn when you can tune in on September 28, for our live puppy cam and more.
It is impossible to express how very grateful we are for everyone who has helped Pet Alliance through this tragedy. Thank you to the hundreds of Orange County firefighters and police officers that showed up and risked their lives saving animals and battling the blaze. Our deepest gratitude to the Orange County Animal Services staff who helped out that night and days after. A big thank you to all of you, our extended Pet Alliance family, who have jumped to action to support us with donations.A special thank you to the businesses who quickly provided storage space for the numerous donations we received – Stanley Steemer, Megan’s Moving and GoStoring