Nov. 2, 2011 -- A Georgia man says he was saved from a house fire thanks to his dog, Duncan, who later perished in the flames.
Still hoarse from smoke inhalation, Scott Dunn of Marietta, Ga., says he is heartbroken after losing his beloved pet of two-and-a-half years. "He was the most lovable—just a wonderful dog," said Dunn. "Every time I saw him, it was like I hadn't seen him in years."
Dunn was asleep Monday night, when he woke at about three in the morning to find smoke "down to the floor" in his home.
It was Duncan, a three-year-old boxer, who woke him in time. "He was just pawing at me. I thought he was trying to go out," recalled Dunn.
Dunn says he grabbed his keys and Duncan by his collar as he attempted to leave the house to get to his car. "The minute I opened the door, it was like the house exploded," said Dunn. "The flames went from one end of the house to the other."
In the confusion Dunn didn't realize that Duncan hadn't made it out of the house.
"I realized I only had his collar in my hand," said Dunn. While Dunn tried to return to the house to rescue Duncan, the heat of the fire kept him out.
"After [the fire] the fire fighters found him curled up in my bed," said Dunn. "That's where he would go when he was scared."
Dunn is adamant he would not have survived the fire without Duncan. "I wouldn't be here talking to you if it wasn't for him," said Dunn, his voice breaking.
With his house uninhabitable and the cause of the fire still under investigation, Dunn has been staying with a neighbor.
Dunn's loss and emotional reaction has touched other animal lovers. Since the news broke about the fire, the Cobb County Fire Department has received multiple calls and emails from people asking how they can help Dunn.
Denelle Boyd, the public information officer, said she received a call from a woman with five dogs asking if she could donate clothes. "[She] said it bothered her all day," said Boyd. "Most everybody who's a pet lover has compassion for him."
Dunn is thankful for the outpouring of support and hopes it means people will remember his beloved pet. "I just want to people to pray for Duncan," said Dunn. "He was my world."