There was a story on the local news this morning about a man who came home to see smoke coming from his house, and when he opened the front door there was a full on fire which had started in an electrical chair. Against pleas to the contrary, and despite what we're always told not to do, he went in to get his five dogs. The man and all five dogs survived, though he did have to go to the hospital for observation of smoke inhalation and burned throat.
Back when we had five dogs, four cats, and five birds, I worried about this all the time. I had one of those stickers on the door about 'save my pets', but knew that someone probably wouldn't be able to find and save all of them. And I didn't know how even I could get all of them, since cats generally hide. In fact, I had a cousin whose house burnt down, and a cat and litter of kittens died under the bed.
Now that we're down to three dogs and a smaller house, I think it would be easier to save them. But would I, could I, should I try to save them if the house was on fire? Would I actually go into the house if I came home and it was on fire? I have two grandsons - would I want to risk losing my life of seeing them grow up to save an animal? Could I stand outside and watch my house burn, knowing that my animals were inside?
Well, of course, the obvious answer would be that I would have no choice but to stay outside if it meant possibly losing my own life. But there are so many scenerios. If I were already in the house, of course I would call them to me and scoot them out. What if they were in the front of the house and I was in the back? Would I have the presense of mind to throw a wet blanket over myself and crawl to them? And should I?
I'm just musing here. Every pet owner who's animal is a beloved family member has thought about this one time or another, I think. The fear being that the house could catch on fire when we're not there and the animals being trapped inside. Not a pleasant thought, and not likely to happen. But it's up there with some of those other things we think about on occasion, like dreams about our teenager being in a car accident, our toddler being kidnapped, a spouse having a heart attack. Those worst case scenerios that we practice our reaction to, that we imagine the worst and best outcome to.
Or is it just me?