Pet Heroes: Part 3

House fires are extremely dangerous. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 85 percent of all deaths due to fires occur in the home. In 2010, U.S. fire departments responded to 384,000 house fires. These fires claimed the lives of 2,640 individuals and injured another 13,350 (not including firefighters). Pets are equally in danger in these situations – and often they are the reason that families make it out alive. Consider these pet stories of heroic pets that saved their families from fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.

In 2007, a water pump malfunctioned in the Keesling family basement in New Castle, Indiana. As carbon monoxide fumes filled the home, the family cat, Winnie, tried to wake Kathy Keesling by pulling her hair and meowing loudly. Only vaguely aware of what was happening, Keesling managed to climb out of bed and call 911. She collapsed 20 feet away from the front door. When firefighters arrived, they treated the family for carbon monoxide poisoning and everyone survived –including Winnie.

In January 2012, a tiny Yorkie/Beagle mix named Tucker saved the Gray family from a house fire in Haverhill, Massachusetts. The family’s children were asleep, and India Gray was watching television. Tucker was barking continuously, so Gray went to check on him. She discovered the back of the house was on fire. The smoke detectors inside the house had yet to go off. Gray called 911 and firefighters were able to save most of the home.

What do you think your pets would do in situations like these? Let us know in the comments.

For part 1 of the heroic pets series, click here. For part 2, click here.

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Julie Perkins

About Julie Perkins

A self-professed "crazy cat lady" and slave to three furry masters, Julie loves all things fuzzy. Throughout her life, she has been owned by cats, dogs, rabbits, gerbils, hamsters, fish and even a hermit crab. A freelance writer who has perfected the fine art of typing with one hand (because there is a cat on top of the other one), she lives in Colorado with her husband and a menagerie of critters.

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