BIG CLIFTY, Ky. (WBKO) -- Over a dozen animals are dead after firefighters fought overnight for hours.
"It's a shame," said Chief Bob Williams with the Grayson County Volunteer Fire Department.
East Grayson Volunteer Fire Department responded to a house on fire in the 200 block of Cemetery Road at around 3:00 a.m. Thursday morning. Clarkson Fire Department eventually came out to assist.
"When we got on the scene the whole front of the structure had already collapsed," said Chief Williams.
Fire officials say the wooden house was fully engulfed which led to four hours of fighting flames.
"It was an old structure and it went pretty fast," said Chief Williams.
13 News was told the burned down house, right beside a brick house, was shelter to rescue dogs and other animals.
"There was no way of saving anything. It was too dangerous for our firefighters to even get very close to the fire," said Chief Williams.
In total, nine dogs, 3 cats and 4 bird lost their lives. One dog was rescued from the flames, and is expected to make a recovery at the vet.
"I hated that so much for the animals to lose their life, but by the time we got there, they were already dead," said Chief Williams.
Chief Williams says as soon as the structure caught fire, it was likely a lost cause.
"Even if we would have gotten the call early I don't know that we could have saved it," he added.
The following late morning, the fire department was back due to winds which contributed to flames popping up in the structure's rubble.
"We don't know what caused the fire, it was too intense to even find out," said Chief Williams.
The owners of the animals and house did not want to make a comment on camera.