A barn fire in Millarville that claimed the lives of several animals has been met with a flood of support.

Close to midnight on October 10, Carmen Jadick, owner of Prairie Spirit Alpacas, was awoken by the sound of her dogs howling.

Looking out her front window, she saw a stack of 500 haybales, delivered earlier that day, engulfed in flames.

By the time the Diamond Valley Fire Department arrived, the barn was fully involved.

Though some alpacas were saved from the blaze, eight of them died, as well as Jadick's dog Sophie, and two chickens.

It left her herd of around 200 alpacas without shelter, melted a cattle trailer, and cut off the water supply to her home.

"It's just a matter now of going step by step, day by day, dealing with getting shelter for the animals, hooking up electricity to my water pump, which has been out because the electricity ran through the barn, so I haven't had water," says Jadick.

A week after the fire, the heap of burnt hay continues to smoulder with the charred, twisted remains of the barn stacked nearby.

millarville fire

News of the fire at Prairie Spirit Alpacas spread quickly, and people wanted to help.

First in line was Jennie Shipley, a good friend of Jadick's who set up a GoFundMe page.

"The next day I just couldn't talk about it, and the next day she was the only person I told, and she suggested the GoFundMe... She set it all up. She was here the next day helping us carry water buckets, and she's a Calgary person, she's not a farm girl. She's a very good friend," says Jadick.

In less than a week, it's raised over $32,000.

Jadick says the tragic fire followed by the flood of support in the span of a week has been a lot to deal with, but she's thankful that so many people have been wanting to help.

"I'm very grateful for the support from the community. It's been overwhelming. People have volunteered labour, they've volunteered to bring things, they've donated to the fund, which is very, very appreciated."

She says the support stretches beyond the Foothills.

"I've been really surprised at the level of the response from the local community, the alpaca community, and people from far away, like in the States."

The GoFundMe page can be seen here.

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