When a dog becomes more than just man’s best friend

Carter’s 3rd Birthday
March 19, 2017
The Shutdown
January 20, 2018

Most people who own dogs live their lives with a companion. A faithful beast who longs for attention and rewards with love. Out of all dog owners in the world, just a few of them receive more than companionship. Tonight, my dog proved himself more than just a pet.

While my wife was at the gym and my kids asleep in their beds, I was at work in my office in the basement. My dog, Moose, was asleep at my feet.

I found a moment of time to pry myself away from my laptop to get a refill of coffee. As I made my way up the stairs to my kitchen, Moose followed along. I must have neglected to remember to put him out earlier because as I poured a new cup of coffee, he relieved himself on the floor. Naturally, I got mad because this dog is house trained. I yelled at him and put him outside as I cleaned up his pee.

After the cleanup was complete, I brought him inside and put him into his kennel in the living room. I normally would have let him come back down to office to sleep, but I was annoyed with him. So into the kennel for an early bedtime for him.

About 20 minutes later, he started barking. Thinking he was hearing people outside, I didn’t think much of it. But he wouldn’t quit. On and on the barking went. I was getting annoyed with this dog tonight.

I stormed upstairs to yell at the dog when all of a sudden I smelled something burning. Something was burning in the house. I started running room to room to seek out the source of the burning smell. I didn’t see smoke or smell it in any room but the living room, where Moose was kenneled. This burning smell wasn’t your typical wood burning smell – it smelled like plastic burning. And it was strong.

Just then, Moose started barking like crazy. And then I heard a popping and sizzling sound coming from the wall behind me. I turned and saw smoke and a few small flames coming out from behind the thermostat control of our ceiling heater. It had shorted out and was catching fire.

I quickly ran to the breaker box and flipped all of the breakers, cutting power to the burning heater control and then I retrieved the fire extinguisher. I let the fucker have it and coated the entire living room with a thick coating of fire retardant.

After getting my kids and dog out of the house and calling the fire department to come check out the damage to make sure there wasn’t any fire behind the wall, I realized something. Moose had saved our house and possibly the lives of me and my children.

Had I not locked Moose into his kennel, he would have been in my office with me in the basement. He would not have been able to alert me to the danger that was developing in the thermostat.

And for that, I am truly thankful for such a great dog.

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