POMPANO BEACH, Fla. – A family of three has been displaced and 10 of their 12 pets are dead after a fire broke out inside of their Pompano Beach home on Wednesday.
Gene Sovey, who lives at the home, told Local 10 News reporter Madeleine Wright that he came home from work around lunchtime Wednesday and saw black smoke coming from the front door to his home in the area of Southwest 13th Court and Ninth Avenue.
Sovey said he opened the door and saw that a fire had erupted inside the living room.
He then grabbed a cooler of water and worked to extinguish the flames, which were out by the time firefighters arrived.
Sovey said the fire appears to have originated from an electrical outlet behind the TV in his living room. The family of three say the fire happened when they were at work and school, and they believe the fire started behind the television.
While the house is still standing, most of the family’s belongings inside were destroyed and 10 of their 12 pets were killed in the fire.
Five Siberian huskies, one Chihuahua, two cockatoos, one Quaker parrot, and one cat were killed.
“I’m going to miss ‘em. Yup. Ain’t nothing you can do though,” Sovey said. “I’m going to have to go on. It’s just I gotta deal with it, I guess.”
“I’m totally devastated. I lost everything that I own,” Chrissy Sovey said.
Some of the animals were trapped in a cage.
“I imagine what they was going through. ‘I want out. I want out.’ And they couldn’t get the f*** out,” Gene Sovey said. “I’m sorry dogs. I didn’t expect this to ever happen. Everybody is dead now. I wish I was dead almost,” he said.
His wife added, “My best friend was Sasha, she was the mama dog. I come home from work, she was there to say, ‘Hi, mommy.’”
Thankfully, their pit bull, which was in the backyard when the fire occurred, survived, as well as their Chihuahua, JJ.
JJ was immediately taken to a veterinary office to be treated.
He is currently in the intensive care unit of Blue Pearl Speciality and Emergency Pet Hospital, and is currently resting in an oxygen chamber as he suffers from smoke inhalation.
According to the doctor, JJ has a long road to recovery ahead of him, but they are optimistic he will make a full recovery.
According to Pompano Beach spokeswoman Sandra King, a city ordinance states that a single family home such as this one can only have “four dogs or four cats or a combination” on the property.
She added that records show “Animal Control has not been called about, or out to that apartment before,” describing this as a “very sad situation.”
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help with JJ’s medical expenses, and a Facebook fundraiser has been created to help the Sovey family pay for the essentials during their time of need.