VACAVILLE, Calif. (KGO) -- Police body cam footage from the Nelson Fire shows the dramatic rescue of dozens of animals as flames began inching closer to a Vacaville animal shelter Friday evening.
A Vacaville police body camera captured the horrifying moments as officers and volunteers rushed to save animals from flames coming close to the SPCA of Solano County.
"We could see the active flames coming down," recalled Officer Carly Stone with Vacaville PD. It's her body cam where she can be heard running out of breath grabbing cats and dogs. "We had a short window to get out as many animals as we could before we knew we had to evacuate," Stone said.
A total of 67 pets were in the fire's path -- including a python.
Many of the animals were loaded into crates and placed in cars.
As the flames got closer, Officer Stone realized time was running out and put some dogs into her patrol car.
"I ended up with three dogs in my car that night," Stone said. "I had nowhere to put the dogs, they seemed to be happy to be with me, so we just went to work and started evacuating houses for a few hours until I could get them back into the SPCA."
The Nelson Fire scorched more than 2,000 acres and burned one home after starting near Interstate 80 in Fairfield Friday afternoon. The shelter was spared.
No animals were injured and are all back at the shelter.
Since the fire, donations have poured in to the shelter. Volunteers say they've received plenty of dog and cat food. What they need are blankets, towels and monetary donations. "We need cash donations for medications," said Debbie Dillon with the SPCA of Solano County. "Because the power was out for two days, we lost the vaccines we had in the refrigerators," she said.
Throughout the day, nearby residents have been dropping off supplies.
"I brought towels because I know they need lots of towels to help with the animals," said Nancy Schlesinger of Vacaville.
Organizers say cleanup could take days.
Some of the animals are in the process of being adopted. "We'll probably end up with a total of 12-15 animals that are with their rescuers," said Dillon.
Officer Stone is one of those rescuers considering adopting a dog -- a happy ending to a scary situation that could have ended much worse.
For more information on how to make a donation or adopt a pet, visit here.
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