‘No idea what I’m going to do’: Woman loses dog, home business in Charleswood blaze

A Winnipeg woman who lost a beloved pet to a fire which destroyed her home and place of business on Saturday morning says she’s lost for answers. 

“I have no idea what I’m going to do now, none,” Jody Kardash said in an interview with CBC, hours after a fire ripped through her Laxdal Road bungalow in Charleswood around 7 a.m.

Kardash, who owned and operated Miss Kleos Pet Treats out of the home, said while one of her two dogs, a shepherd called Kera, made it out of the fire alive, her Jack Russell terrier Martini died from smoke inhalation. 

A neighbour tried giving the dog CPR and fire crews tried administering oxygen but she couldn’t be revived, Kardash said. She suspects Martini was afraid of the smoke detectors going off and hid in the house. 

Kardash said she’d left home around 6 a.m. to set up as usual at the St. Norbert Farmers’ Market and got a call from a neighbour an hour later alerting her to the blaze. She raced home, she said, to find as many as eight fire trucks at the scene. 

The Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service said in a statement they went to the fire at 7:14 a.m. and found it “well involved.” Crews worked until 9:35 a.m. to get it under control. 

The house was extensively damaged by fire, smoke and water, the WFPS said. It’s not clear yet what started the fire. Kardash said an investigator couldn’t get into the house because it was too dangerous. 

Jody Kardash ran a natural pet treats business out of her home. “I’m out of business,” she said in the wake of the fire. (Instagram/GoFundMe)

Kardash said she is very careful about fire prevention. 

“I always went through the house and turned everything off before I left. I always took every precaution with fire extinguishers everywhere but when you’re not home there’s nothing you can do,” she said. 

“Hug your fur babies for me tonight,” she said. “You just never know when something’s going to happen.” 

She and Kera were staying at a friend’s house. In a video post to social media, Kardash was in tears as she thanked people for their support. 

Fellow makers are banding together to try and help Kardash through a GoFundMe page, which by 9 p.m. Saturday had surpassed its stated goal of $5,000. 

“We’re a big family,” Kardash said, choking up. “They’re amazing people. We’re a huge family that always helps each other out,” she said.