Dog News

Dog Alerts Family of Fire before Fire Alarms Go Off

by Katherine

Life With Dogs is reader-supported. We may earn a small commission through products purchased using links on this page.

On Friday Oct. 11, 2013, a Doberman named Baxter from Woodridge, Ill., saved the life of his owners, Gary D’Amato and wife, when the pet alerted them their house was on fire, Baxter knew the family was in danger even before fire alarms went off.

According to a release from the Darien-Woodridge Fire Protection District, the fire broke out on the 1200 block of Richfield Court in Woodridge just after 4 a.m.

Gary D'Amato and Baxter.
Gary D’Amato and Baxter.

Baxter entered D’Amato’s room and barked waking him up.

“We were pretty lucky that he woke us up because … we never smelled the smoke,” said D’Amato. “We were sleeping and never smelled it, but the dog did.”

D’Amato, his wife, and Baxter exited the property and immediately called 911 to report the fire. Firefighters arrived 4 minutes later and started to contain the blaze.

According to Deputy Chief Steven P. Gorsky the fire started on the outside of the house and it was probably caused by 12 volt landscape light transformer. The home did have working fire detectors but because the fire was on the outside, the house didn’t fill up with smoke quick enough for the alarms to detect it and go off. The alarms did go off a few minutes after fire rescuers arrived on the scene.

The fire caused $30,000 in damages but the house is habitable. Thanks to Baxter the D’Amatos are alive and safe.