Fire Closes Wheeler County Animal Shelter

11:04 AM, Apr 11, 2011   |    comments
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A fire at a Wheeler County animal shelter Friday left the owners homeless and struggling to take care of nearly 100 dogs.

Sunday, the Atlanta Humane Society stepped in to help some dogs find a permanent home.

For 10 years, Southern Comfort Animal Rescue has given homeless dogs a new lease on life, but the fire changed that.

Co-owner Scott Bennett says, "I got out as many animals as I could. Unfortunately, we did lose a couple."

Bennett and Terry Wolf ran the shelter out of their home.

After the blaze charred the kitchen and left the them without electricity and water, they knew they had to find help for nearly 100 dogs.

"Our number one concern has always been our dogs," Bennett says.

"It's going to be a big change to wake up and not have all my friends here."

The Atlanta Humane Society came to the rescue and moved 53 dogs to their shelter.

Senior Director of Operations Andrea Peacock says, "The fire that happened here kind of brought to light the situation. This group definitely had more animals than what they're capable of housing at the moment, and the fire just kind of made the situation a little bit worse."

"Lately a lot of rescues have been getting in over their head and they don't necessarily have the funding like we do to be able to help," Peacock says.

As dogs were loaded up for Atlanta, the focus for the owners turned to rebuilding.

"Right now we can't live in our home. We're having to shut down our rescue," Bennett says.

"Southern Comfort will be back one day."

Twenty-three dogs also went to the Dublin-Laurens County Humane Society.

For more information about adopting any of these dogs, you can call the Atlanta Humane Society at 404-875-5331 or the Dublin-Laurens County Humane Society at 478-272-5341.

Southern Comfort was the rescue group rallying support for Toombs County dog "Alice" who lived in a box.

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