It started at about 11:40 p.m. Wednesday at the shelter on 9th Street. Firefighters say they believe a clothes dryer on the first floor of the shelter is to blame -- whether it malfuctioned or something flammable was put inside is still unclear.
As the flames tore through the shelter downstairs, an apartment upstairs caught fire too. Johanna White lives in the apartment and says she was asleep when the fire started. Her dog, Baby, started whining and barking and woke her up. She calls Baby a hero and credits the dog with saving her life.
A door separating the animals kept the flames from spreading into the dog area of the shelter.
The surviving animals are being cared for at two area pet hospitals. But the shelter is trying to get the word out they will need foster care for the animals and donations to keep going. The shelter has been serving homeless pets since 1927.
Berkeley firefighters remained on firewatch into the morning in case the fire flares up.