Stray dog alerts family to house fire, then praise for the dog’s efforts on social media lead to his real owner

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On Thursday morning, a “stray dog” who befriended a family in Big Stone Gap, Virginia, helped warn them of a potentially dangerous fire. As reported by WJHL News, the fire started in an outdoor shelter the family had set up for the stray, who had been dubbed Butter. Charity Golloway had placed an electric lamp inside of the dog house to keep the pup warm, but the lamp caught fire and the flames were dangerously close to the family’s Silver Creek Road home.

But Butter quickly took action after the fire started – running to Charity’s bedroom window and barking for help. She told the news agency, “He knew something wasn’t right and that someone needed to know. He’s a smart dog.”

And it was a good thing that Butter was barking – the flames were intense enough that the heat burst a window in the house. Golloway said, “the flames just got big really fast. It’s overwhelming actually how fast it happened.”

Firefighters with the Valley Fire Department responded soon enough to save the house from being destroyed. And they met the friendly pooch who helped the family escape safely. Firefighter Justin Stidham said, “It came up and played with all of us. I was sitting there petting it. It was just nice as it could be.”

Stidham posted a picture of the dog on Facebook and something amazing happened – the dog’s real owners saw the photo and recognized their missing dog, Cooper, who had been gone since the summer. After some correspondence, the Golloways confirmed that Cooper did indeed belong to the people claiming to be his owner, and he will be returned home soon.

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