WHETSTONE — A heat lamp that sparked a fire in a small wooden shelter and corral in Whetstone killed chickens, ducks and two goats Tuesday.

Whetstone Fire District was dispatched at 11:20 a.m. to the 70 block of Hamel Road, a rental property owned by Scott and Lisa Graves.

While firefighters were able to contain the blaze to the structure and corral where the animals were housed, they were unable to save the animals.

“This fire was just an unfortunate accident,” Whetstone Fire Chief Peter Bidon said. “It was caused by a responsible pet owner trying to keep animals warm, but the heat lamp was placed too close to flammable materials.”

Two chicks that managed to escape were swooped up by Lisa Graves who inspected them for injuries and placed them into a container.

“I feel so badly for our renter,” she said. “She’s a University of Arizona student and left for Tucson this morning, so she wasn’t even here when this happened. When she comes home and sees this, she’s going to be devastated, especially over the goats. They were really sweet pets.”

The firefighters were given bottled water by Scott Graves, who praised their responsiveness and efforts.

“They responded quickly and were able to get the fire contained before it spread to other buildings on the property,” he said. “They’re even tearing the shelter down, which I appreciate. It’s so badly burned that it’s a safety hazard.”

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