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TAMPA, Fla. – A calico cat named Ruby, the only surviving pet from a South Tampa house fire that claimed a dog and five cats Monday evening, is being treated at BluePearl Veterinary Partners hospital for smoke inhalation and blindness.

The cat’s owner, Florence White, says she lost everything in the blaze, which occurred in the 4700 block of W. Iowa Ave. around 5 p.m. Monday. The only silver lining is knowing her beloved cat will survive. 

“She’s a fighter,” said White, who was at home with her 22-year-old daughter and 33-year-old son when the fire erupted. “We’re all so glad she’s okay.” After losing everything, White is unable to pay for the veterinary care needed to treat her courageous, Ruby. This is where we need your help!  

White brought Ruby to BluePearl, where she was treated by Dr. Melissa Torre. Ruby was immediately put in a special chamber where she received emergency oxygen to counteract any negative effects from the smoke inhalation. She was also given pain medication.

“So far, she seems pretty stable,” said Torre. “She was resting comfortably for most of the night.” However, Ruby appears to have been blinded during the fire, Torre added. The cat is being examined today by one of BluePearl’s board-certified veterinary ophthalmologists to try to determine the cause of her injury.

National pet charity Frankie’s Friends is stepping in to help pay for Ruby’s care, which is estimated to be around $3,000. Those interested in contributing are encouraged to click here.

“Our hearts go out to the White family, who suffered such a tremendous loss,” said Danielle Martin, Executive Director of Frankie’s Friends. “We’re happy to do what we can to reunite Ruby with the people who love her.”

White said she was making herself some dinner when she walked away from the stove to look for some papers. The next thing she knew, her son was yelling at her to leave the house.

“He said, ‘Mama, mama – you’ve got to leave right now!” she said.

White said she’s devastated by the loss of her pets. She said her dog, Charlie, a lab-pit bull mix, rarely left her side.

“I can’t stop thinking about them,” she said. “I miss them so much.”

Please donate to help Ruby today! 

Any funds raised above the goal will help other pets in need, just like Ruby.

With full hearts, we are happy to report that Roxie is recovering nicely and feeling much better after emergency surgery to remove a corn cob stuck in her belly last week. 

Roxie is recovering nicely!

Roxie is recovering nicely!

DONATE to help save more pets like Roxie!

Thanks to donors like you, Roxie was able to receive the care she needed to truly save her life.

Her family was faced with the decision to euthanize Roxie after they couldn't afford the cost of the surgery she desperately needed.

But, thanks to the generosity and support of donors like you, Frankie's Friends was able to pay for the treatment to remove the corn cob stuck in her belly and save Roxie's life! 

"You guys truly saved my sweet girl's life! I couldn't be more thankful... She's my babygirl and I'd be lost without her. My whole family says thank you! I'm so incredibly happy with her progress. Her life truly was saved and I couldn't be more thankful."

–Roxie's Mom



This is an actual xray of Roxie showing the corncob.

This is an actual xray of Roxie showing the corncob.

 We urgently need your help to save the life of a sweet 8-year-old boxer, Roxie, who needs emergency surgery this afternoon after gobbling down several corncobs. Roxie vomited up six of the cobs but at least one is lodged in her intestine, making her extremely sick.

Dr. Beth Tynan, a board-certified critical care specialist with BluePearl’s Virginia Beach hospital, said it’s still unclear if they’ll be able to remove the corncob with one incision or whether a more involved surgery is required to remove part of Roxie’s intestine. “We’re hoping it’s the first one but we’ll have to wait and see,” Tynan said. “The cob can sometimes cause damage to the area around it.”

Roxie’s owner, Dakota Hudson, said the dog is a wonderful family pet. “She’s the kind of dog that if you’re upset, she knows it.”

Dakota has had Roxie since the dog was seven weeks old and would do anything for her. But her family is financially strapped right now because her grandfather recently suffered a stroke and they’re paying out of pocket for his at-home care.

“Roxie was my first actual pet,” Dakota said. “Just thinking about losing her is completely heartbreaking.”

Without the help of donors like you to assist with the cost of her care, Roxie faces possible euthanasia. Please help us raise $5,000.00 to save Roxie's life and give her the surgery she desperately needs.




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Make a difference by donating a vehicle! Your donation could help save a life. 

Donate your car, truck, motorcycle, RV, or boat to our nonprofit organization by simply completing the form below and we'll reach out to you to arrange the pick-up of your vehicle donation, at no cost to you. You may qualify for a tax deduction while supporting a cause that is near and dear to your heart!

For more information and to donate, please click HERE.

To make an offline donation, please mail checks to:

Frankie's Friends
2950 Busch Lake Blvd
Tampa FL 33614

Thank you for your interest and support.