BUTLER COUNTY, Ohio (FOX19) - A fire burned through a Middletown home last week, killing more than 20 animals. Just one of them survived.
A neighbor saw a dog running from the blaze, and that dog has been missing ever since.
Now the dog has been found, though she is badly burned. Currently “Lil Bit” is recovering at MedVet.
FOX19 NOW has decided not to share images of the dog due to their graphic and disturbing nature.
Meg Melampy, president of Joseph’s Legacy, says the Australian shepherd mix now has burns on 50 percent of her body.
“From what I understand, the dog was on fire, and the firefighters put her out. She was put in a crate and someone opened it," Melampy explained. "She’s skittish. She’s a puppy. She’s only about 10 months, so she took off, and the family has been worried about her night and day.”
The house on Winton Street in Middletown caught fire last Thursday. The fire is believed to have started due to electrical issues.
Melampy says the homeowners rescue animals and that more than 20 of those rescues, including dogs, cats, birds, and reptiles, died in the blaze.
Somehow Lil Bit managed to escape. Six days later a neighbor found the injured pup and called Joseph’s Legacy.
Melampy says she had an instant feeling it was Lil Bit.
“My heart starts racing. We get there, and the dog was under the sheet, I had a hard time getting to her," Melampy recalled. "She tried to get away, but I grabbed her. I said, ‘You are not getting away this time. Not tonight!’”
Lil Bit’s owners lost their house and belongings in the fire. All they have now is their dog, though she has a long road to recovery with multiple surgeries ahead.
Melampy wants to make sure Lil Bit gets the best treatment.
“A lot of people might say, ‘Why would you do all that?’" Melampy mused. “She deserves it. She fought through the fire and survived this long. She decided she wants to live."
Joseph’s Legacy says since the dog is in pretty bad shape, the medical bills are expected to be costly. They are asking people in the community to help out if they can.
If you are interested in donating to help with medical expenses you can contact Joseph’s Legacy at PO BOX 3 Middletown, OH 45042.