PORT CHARLOTTE — The Motzer family is looking to pick up the pieces after an electrical fire at their Rodgers Avenue home Monday left them scrambling for a place to live.
Bob and Bunny Motzer are also searching for four of their house-cats, which are still missing after the fire.
Bob said he came home from a morning of running errands to find fire trucks lining his street, smoke pouring from the windows of his home, and his dog Belle, a terrier/Chihuahua mix, running around the driveway.
According to Motzer, his first thought when he took stock of the scene was the whereabouts of his six cats. He also wanted Belle to behave herself after he saw her following firemen around the yard and the driveway.
“I was glad to see that she was alright and not biting anyone. She thinks she’s a pit bull, not a terrier,” he joked.
According to Charlotte County Fire/EMS spokeswoman Dee Hawkins-Garland, the cause of the fire was an unspecified electrical problem. The call came in at 11:44 a.m., Hawkins-Garland said, and fire crews had the fire extinguished by 11:57 a.m. No one was injured in the fire, she said.
Hawkins-Garland added that the home was filled with at least 4 feet of smoke, and the home is now unlivable. The Red Cross has also been called in to help the Motzer family, she said.
Bob said he has a family member with a vacant home in Englewood that he and Bunny may be able to live in until they figure things out.
But, for now, they’re just hoping all of their cats find their way back home. Bob said they’re missing two calicos, a black cat and grey cat, none of which have spent time outside. None of them have identifying collars or tags, he said.
Two of their six cats turned up later Monday, according to Bob, and fire crews found no remains of any of the other animals inside the home.
“We’re not going to be sleeping here any time soon,” he added.
Bob is asking anyone who comes across a cat they suspect might be one of the Motzers’ to call 941-875-0980.