A dog saved the lives of his owners after he woke a sleeping couple while their house was on fire.
Craig Jones and Marie Jordan were fast asleep in the early hours of Sunday morning when they were woken up by Shadow, their white German Shepherd.
Assuming Shadow needed a visit to the loo, Craig sleepily got out of bed to go and let him into the back garden.
His sleepy state was suddenly altered when he went into his living room to find it was filling with black smoke.
An electrical fault that started a fire in the kitchen had started to spread, rapidly moved into the living room.
The flames had gone undetected as website designer Craig and occupational therapist Marie had taken down the smoke alarm in order to decorate just days before.
Luckily, Shadow was alert and used his instincts to understand something wasn’t right, despite being a relatively young two-year-old and having no fire safety training.
“We owe our lives to Shadow,” Craig said.
“The fire brigade said had he not woken us up when he did, we wouldn’t be here now – a few minutes more and we’d have been dead.”
Describing what had happened, he said: “It was about quarter to five in the morning.
“Shadow sleeps in the room with us but he has the run of the house. He started barking, so i said to him ‘it’s OK Shadow I’ll take you out for a wee’.
“So I left the bedroom and as I got to the bottom of stairs I was overwhelmed with black smoke. As I walked into the lounge, I could see the flames and obviously it was apparent that we had a house fire.
“I went back upstairs to my partner, told her we had to get out of the house because we had a fire, got ourselves and Shadow safely to our car and rung the fire brigade.”
He added: “He’s such a loyal, caring family dog. He’s popular in the area as people always see us walking. He looks like a wolf so we get stopped all the time by people asking about him.
“Because he’s a German Shepherd, and he’s quite big, sometimes people are in fear of him, but he’s the softest, warmest dog you could meet.
“But we’re in debt to him, to have that intelligence to know to wake us up because of danger, just shows you how amazing German Shepherds, and dogs in general, really are.
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“So we’re giving him lots of walks, lots of treats, and family and friends have been donating things to give to him too.”
The couple were also keen to stress the importance of having a smoke alarm.
Craig said: “We’ve been decorating the whole house and were halfway through painting the hall way, so I removed the smoke alarms to paint that area – it was a matter of a couple of days, and I’d said to Marie on the Friday ‘we must get them back up’.
“So if you are doing that, make sure you get the alarm straight back up.”
Though they feel lucky to be alive, the fire has made them homeless for the next few months.
They’ve also been left with almost no possessions due to smoke damage which ruined everything in their home on Meadow Road.
They are currently living at a hotel as it is not safe to return and luckily they’ve managed to find a place than can accommodate Shadow.
Friends of the couple have taken it upon themselves to start a GoFundMe page to help with the financial blow of what has happened.