Persistent Pooch Saves Illinois Couple From Fire

Pam Fann's home almost became a hunk, a hunk of burning trailer with her and her fiance inside. Then, Elvis came to the rescue.

Elvis is the small, white Bichon Frise owned by Fann and Dennis Curtis. Named after "The King," he is now known as the hero dog.

Related Content: Images

Fann and Curtis said Elvis saved their lives when he woke them up after their Jan Marie Lane mobile home caught fire late Saturday.

The couple was fast asleep -- her in bed and him on the couch -- when the dog started jumping on Fann, she recalled Monday.

Fann tried to shoo the dog away, assuming that a raccoon outside had riled him up, but Elvis wouldn't quit. He kept pawing at her until she woke up. That's when, Fann said, she realized the bedroom was filled with smoke. She moved to the window and saw the rear of the trailer was covered in flames.

"My little dog woke me up and saved my life," Fann said. "He sure did. I never even smelled the smoke or anything and my whole back wall was on fire."

Curtis soon woke up, too, after Fann started screaming that the house was on fire. She called 911, while he dashed outside to put out the blaze. Curtis said he emptied two fire extinguishers on the back of the trailer before the flames died out.

"I think I was still half asleep when I was trying to put the fire out," Curtis said. "I was confused but I got the fire out. The flames were up into the trees. It's unreal. I just thank God that our dog woke us up and we're still alive."

Elgin Fire Marshall Richard Dunne said the cause of the blaze was suspicious and that police and fire officials were investigating it as a possible crime.

Fann said some type of accelerant, such as kerosene or diesel fuel, was found on the house.

"It's an ongoing investigation," Dunne said. "There were police department evidence technicians called to the scene."

Fann and Curtis are trying not to worry about who might have set their mobile home on fire or why. Instead, they are focusing on Elvis. The couple said they bought Elvis extra treats and are constantly telling him how much they love him. They call him their hero.

"I think he's the best friend I ever had," Curtis said. "He definitely got spoiled yesterday."

Copyright 2006, Chicago Sun-Times Inc.

Copyright 2006 by All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.