Firefighters rescued hundreds of exotic animals from a burning building in Collin County Wednesday morning after a fire broke out at a pet store.
At about midnight, a fire broke out at IQW, an exotic animal wholesaler on Industrial Boulevard in McKinney. Firefighters arrived at the scene and quickly put out the flames, but the heat was still too intense for some of the creatures trapped inside.
"Anytime we lose animals, it's really stressful -- especially knowing that they suffered," said Mike Smith, owner of IQW. "I can't imagine."
Smith said about 200 animals died or are expected to die due to smoke inhalation or drowning.
The fire department is investigating the cause of the fire, but Smith said heat lamps inside the store may have played a role in starting the fire.