1 person injured, 5 dogs die in fire

An unidentified man removes several of the nearly

An unidentified man removes several of the nearly 70 dogs rescued after fire broke out around noon in the rear of Pick of the Litter, at 105 East Main Street in Smithtown. Only 5 dogs died and no other injuries were reported. (July 23, 2012) (Credit: James Carbone)

One person was treated for smoke inhalation and five dogs perished when a fire tore through a Smithtown pet shop and the apartment upstairs, authorities said Monday. Another 70 animals were rescued from the building.

The fire began in the apartment above the pet shop, fire officials said. It killed a dog and her four puppies, according to building owner Bob Sullivan.

A man, his son and a friend live in the apartment. One occupant, who fire officials said was about 25, was rushed to St. Catherine of Siena Hospital Medical Center for treatment of smoke inhalation.

All of the animals inside the Smithtown pet shop, Pick of the Litter -- 51 dogs, 15 kittens, four cats and a mix of exotic animals such as lizards and iguanas -- survived.

Sullivan said that all of the animals would be cared for, and people associated with the shop were assisting. About a dozen cages filled with animals lined the parking lot adjacent to the shop late Monday afternoon.

"The animals, and the residents, are going to all be relocated to a safe place," Sullivan said.

The owner of the pet store declined to comment.

Tim Murphy, second assistant chief of the Smithtown Fire Department, said that the investigation is ongoing, but it appeared to be accidental.

He praised fire officials for their efforts. "It was quickly contained, the firefighters did a good job," he said.

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