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St Vincents Veterinary Surgery

9 Crescent Road, Wokingham. Tel 0118 979 3200

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From the MAIDENHEAD ADVERTISER 30th June 2000

Hero Hound Saves Owner From Blaze

by Kathryn Lay

Lucky escape for OAP say firemen

A Tiny terrier was hailed a hero this week after saving his owner from her blazing flat.

Little Sam, a West Highland terrier, woke pensioner Greta Broadley by pawing her face as smoke filled her flat in North Town Mead, Maidenhead, in the early hours of Sunday. The hero hound had only lived with Mrs Broadley, 64, for eight days after she adopted him from Binfield Dog Rescue. Sub-officer Paul Shoebridge, of Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service, said "Mrs Broadley had a very, very lucky escape. There is no doubt the dog saved her life. If she had been asleep for another five or ten minutes ther would have been a very different outcome."

Mrs Broadley woke to find her smoke alarm sounding and escaped from the blazing flat with Sam to a neighbour's home where she called the fire brigade. Fire engines arrived at 4.47am to find the lounge on fire and the rest of the flat badly damaged by smoke.

Mrs Broadley said: "I would never have woken up if it hadn't been for Sam's barking. I am very proud of him. He is a little smasher. I am so glad I got him and he is being spoiled with nothing but tuna and chicken now."

Mrs Broadley had the chance to be re-housed by the Royal Borough council but turned it down because Sam could not have gone with her. She is staying with her daughter Mary and son-in-law Norman Taylor at the moment and hopes to return to her flat within a couple of months.

Mr Taylor said: "We are very grateful to Sam. The fireman said he found a dusty outline of Greta on the bed where the soot had started to settle. She was very lucky to get out and she even tried to get back in to rescue her Budgie but was stopped. Sam is a special fellow. She did not want to be parted from him especially now".

Paul Johnson, manager of Binfield Dog Rescue where Sam came from, said "I and very pleased Sam was so settled with his new owner that he felt protective of her already. He obviously went to the right home".

The cause of the fire is being investigated. Firefighters have repeated advice about fitting smoke alarms within earshot and keeping them maintained.

My Hero: Mrs Broadley with her saviour, Sam the West Highland terrier
Photo by Matthew Phillips
Page updated: 08-01-2006
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