A Cleveland apartment fire causes massive damage to local businesses

CLEVELAND — Cleveland Fire officials have confirmed the cause of the fire at the Bridgeview Apartment Complex on West 9th Street was accidental.

The fire broke out on the seventh floor of the apartments and although no one was injured, about 27 apartments and one shop have water damage from the sprinkler system.

The shop, located on the first floor of the complex, is Fluff n’ Stuff, a dog sitting, grooming and boarding shop.

The owner, Marche Smith, opened the downtown location about a year ago. Clarissa Bonton is the General Manager of the site. She was there on Tuesday when the fire broke out.

“I look ahead and I’m like, ‘Woah,’ that’s just a big cloud of smoke that’s completely enveloping us,” she said. “We felt the heat especially when we were trying to pack up and get all the dogs ready.”

Bonton said Smith worked hard over the past year to make Fluff n’ Stuff a household name for pet parents in downtown Cleveland, and they’ve finally made it.

“It was better than ever. We get a steady flow of clients, a family that’s building that family, like, ‘Oh Napoleon come in, oh Otto come in,'” Bonton said.

But now water damage from Tuesday’s fire has forced them to close their doors for the time being.

“It was like it was pouring in there, to the point where it was inundated,” Bonton said. “We came back around 9:00 p.m. to check on the site and it was still dripping water everywhere, flooding everywhere,” she said.

There are now dozens of fans airing the facility, but they are unsure how long it will take to get everything ready for the reopening.

“We just want to make sure everything is safe so the dogs come back,” Bonton said. “It’s very, very heartbreaking to see it going so fast. We’ve only been open for a year.”

They are confident that the reopening will be a relief for them and their four-legged family members.

“I remember at the end of the day they are family and our reopening will be amazing,” she said.

Fluff n’ Stuff needs to replace most supplies, toys, beds and electronics. If you want to help, click here.

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