Canandaigua, N.Y. – Firefighters from five departments responded to put out a house fire on Goff Road in Canandaigua at 11 p.m. Monday before it sparked and restarted early Tuesday morning.
The smoke detector woke homeowner Lori Hicks, 55, who is a dog breeder.
She runs Masasyu Kennels, which is known all over the world for its champion lineage Alaskan Malamutes.
Hicks says when she smelled smoke around 11 p.m. Monday, she called out to her beloved dog Hanna. She opened the door to the lower level where the whelping boxes are kept for the puppies she breeds and she was slapped in the face by a wall of flames and intense heat.
“This scorching, searing heat, the smoke was just basically like, my quilts cooked, said Hicks. "You couldn't catch your breath. I came out of there last night and my face was full of soot."
Hicks managed to save 7 of her Alaskan Malamutes, including Hanna, and 2 cats. However, 7 adult dogs, 12 puppies and 7 cats did not survive.
The puppies were from two litters, just 4 and 5 weeks old.
They had future homes with families around the United States and Europe, including Italy, Spain and Germany.
Hicks and Harold Power, 66, were treated at F.F. Thompson Hospital for smoke inhalation and released.
Two Bristol firefighters were also treated for smoke inhalation and released.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.