Key's own dog began barking and shaking his cage to alert his owner a fire had started in the animal clinic Key and his veterinarian wife opened together.
"If he wouldn't have started barking they probably all would have died," Key said.
Crews from Russellville's Fire Department arrived quickly and the department's chief said began aggressively fighting the fire.
"They made an attack on the fire from the bay door area of the structure," said Chief of Russellville's Fire Department John Cochran.
The animals all made it out safely, but the fire proved to be dangerous for more than the animals when the cables holding one of the large bay doors melted and fell on a firefighter.
"You can kind of see how hard it hit him that's where his leg was," Key pointed out.
He watched the door collapse and jumped to his feet to help a man who just moments before was helping him.
"I grabbed a post and shoved it under the door and pried it up," he said. "These guys put there lives on the line everyday for us and I didn't think about it I just did it."
"It was just a matter of moments before they were able to get the door back up and take him to safety," said Chief Cochran.
Those watching said they held their breathe for the approximately 30 seconds it took to get the fire fighter out.
In cell phone video from reporter Michelle Jostmeyer with the River Valley Leader you can see the dazed fighter being led to the waiting emergency crews shortly after being freed.
"There's a lot of light out coming through where the door collapsed," said Key.
They are now left sorting through insurance red-tape and scorched dog food trying to clean-up.
They said aside from the emergency workers, the staff with Russellville Animal Clinic deserve acknowledgment for stepping in during their time of need.
"They reached out to us and it just means a lot," Correy Key said.
"The job comes with risks we know that," said Chief Cochran.
No animals were hurt in the fire. They're in temporary clinics while everything gets cleaned up.
The Key's tell us they plan on re-building.