Shelter Owner Badly Burned Saving Animals From Blaze

Story By: Jonathan Macias, Sub EditorJoseph GolderAgency: Central European News


Video Credit: CEN/Jimmy Tamayo

These images show an animal lover who suffered burns to his face and limbs while desperately trying to save animals from his home after it caught fire.

According to reports, Jose Alexis Cortes’ had provided shelter for eight stray cats and eight stray dogs at his home the city of Cali in the western Colombian department of Valle del Cauca.

Pictures Credit: CEN/Jimmy Tamayo

But a burning candle sparked a blaze and when the brave animal lover realised the property was on fire, and he tried to rescue the animals.

Viviana Florez, who helped look after the animals, told local media: “Jose said that the animals were suffocating and howling so he ran into the fire to get them out.”

Video Credit: CEN/Radio Conexion Animal

She also explained that the shelter does not have a power supply and Cortes lit a candle after his lantern broke which was then knocked over by a dog, sparking the blaze.

Reports said that Cortes succeeded in saving the eight dogs trapped in the house while the eight cats that live there ran away and were later found by volunteers.

Pictures Credit: CEN/Jimmy Tamayo

Fabio Guevara Pineros, from the Gamaliel Foundation that supports the shelter, told Central European News (CEN) that Jose Alexis Cortes is a “hero” who is very dedicated to “saving pets”.

He added: ” He loves the animals so much that he is in intensive care today because he saved the animals”.

Pictures Credit: CEN/Jimmy Tamayo

According to Juan Pablo Troches, the coordinating doctor in the burns unit of the Hospital Universitario del Valle (HUV) where Cortes was transferred, the shelter owner will remain under medical supervision for the next two weeks.

He added: “The patient has burns, two deep and one superficial, on his face and upper limbs. The recovery time is usually around 20 days.”

Pictures Credit: CEN/Jimmy Tamayo

Cortes said: “I want my animals to be well and with me again. I can’t wait to see them. A thousand blessings to all.”

He also posted a video on Facebook alongside Viviana Florez, showing his body covered in bandages. He said to his supporters: “Blessings to all of you.”

Fabio Guevara Pineros, from the Gamaliel Foundation that supports Juan in caring for local strays, said: “We need to rebuild the refuge and get food for Jose Alexis, the hero of the day because he is vegan. So, we need vegan food and some clothes for him.”

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