A double-wide mobile home was reduced to ashes by a fire that broke out Sunday morning at a residence on Jana Lane, about halfway between Billings and Roundup off of U.S. Highway 87 North.
The three residents were at home when the fire started, but none were injured, according to Yellowstone County Cpl. Derrek Skinner. The residents were able to save most of the animals in the house, but one of their cats and a ball python appeared to have perished in the blaze.
"The dogs woke them up to a whole lot of smoke," Skinner said. "They saw the fire and got out."
The Shepherd and Worden volunteer fire departments also responded to the fire. Shepherd Fire Chief Phil Ehlers said the house was a total loss, and estimated its value at $130,000.
Responders to the fire initially suspected it started from the wood stove, but currently suspect it was caused by the house's electric system.
The fire appeared to have spread quickly through the structure after it started. It was fully engulfed when firefighters were first dispatched at about 9:30 a.m.