People’s Animal Welfare Society of south suburban Tinley Park is asking for donations to help cover repairs and veterinary bills following a fire at its animal shelter on Wednesday.
Fire crews and volunteers evacuated 55 cats and 42 dogs from the shelter, who were taken to Midwest Animal Hospital in neighboring Orland Park for observation, according to the Village of Tinley Public Safety Department.
Fourteen cats and two dogs showed signs of respiratory distress, according to PAWS Tinley Park. The shelter said it expects all the animals to make a full recovery.
The fire broke out in the shelter’s laundry room, PAWS Tinley Park President Terri Buckley said. The shelter has damage to its laundry room, in addition to vents, ceilings, HVAC and walls in other areas of the shelter, according to a social media post by PAWS Tinley Park.
The shelter has received support from surrounding communities since the fire, Buckley said.
“We’re overwhelmed with the generosity,” Buckley said. “The night that the fire happened, when, finally, the fire department left and we were able to lock up the shelter, cars just kept pulling in from the community, dropping off blankets and towels and laundry detergent and whatever they thought we would need.”
The shelter is expected to be closed for at least a month while it undergoes cleaning and repairs. In the meantime, the animals at the shelter have boarding-like accommodations and foster homes, Buckley said.
The South Suburban Humane Society in Matteson will be taking in PAWS Tinley Park’s normal stray load over the next several days, according to the Village of Tinley Public Safety Department.
As of Friday night, PAWS Tinley Park had raised more than $48,500 on Facebook.
If you’re interested in donating, visit PAWS Tinley Park’s website.