Structure Fire Burns Through Strip Mall, Pet Store - FOX 32 News Chicago

Structure Fire Burns Through Strip Mall, Pet Store

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Los Angeles, CA -

This story has so many grim elements to it. Fire severely damaged a strip mall at Vermont in Hollywood, affecting a pet shop the most. Kim's Pet and Fish shop had been in the neighborhood for 25 years, and its current owners had it for the past 5 years. Firefighters were able to save about 100 animals, however, Aeriel Valdez says so many others died. There were snakes, rabbits, birds, fish and other critters that could not handle the heat. When it came to fish many died because their glass aquariums cracked sending water out of the tanks killing the fish inside.

Bad as that was, Valdez, and one of the owners Carlos Xicotencalt, told me some people stole animals. Owner Xicotencalt tells me he hopes they take care of the animals they stole. Valdez, though, says it was "ugly" seeing people take pets while she and others were trying to save them.

And on another sad note, the shop owners have no insurance and hope to rebuild with whatever savings they have. 

Firefighters say that the fire was "accidental" and are currently trying to discover the cause behind the tragic fire. Hopefully, we'll learn more later. Meanwhile, the pets that survived have been taken to another pet shop. For Xicotencalt, his brother Vicente, and their mom, they are feeling a sense of shock. They hope to rebuild with their savings.

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