Diesel the dog alerts owners to fire

Published 01/23 2014 11:30AM

Updated 01/23 2014 11:34AM

GLENARM -- A young couple from Central Illinois says their dog saved their lives. He woke them up as their house was burning. WCIA-3's Steve Staeger finds out all about the new meaning to man's best friend: lifesaver.

This couple had just fallen asleep after getting back late from a hunting trip. They say, if their dog, Diesel, hadn't acted quickly, they wouldn't be here today.

Rottweilers generally get a bad wrap. Diesel's no different.

"He's kind of a bully. He doesn't like other people, which is, I mean, he makes a good guard dog."

Last week, Diesel took guard dog to a whole new level.

"A little after 5:00 in the morning, we just kind of woke up, just coming out of it and we were like, 'we can't breathe, what's going on?'"

Kaleigh Bartlett and her boyfriend, Tyler, found themselves in the middle of a crisis. Their house was on fire. It didn't take them long to realize what woke them up.

"Diesel was out of his kennel without either one of us having unlatched it. And his wire kennel was all bent, still latched shut, but the bottom was bent and he bent the door right off and got out of his kennel and woke him up."

You heard that right. Diesel broke right out of his kennel, ran into the other room and nudged Tyler to wake him up.

"He knew something was going on and he woke us up and said, 'you know, mom and dad, something's going on, get out.'"

Kaleigh and Tyler did, just in time.

"We're so blessed. I mean, I told everybody, had it not been for him, we might not be talking to you right now."

Rottweilers generally get a bad wrap. Diesel's changing his.

"He's a good boy though for us. He's a lifesaver."

Kaleigh and Tyler say their home is probably a total loss. Right now, they're staying in a camper until they get everything figured out. You better believe, Diesel is right there next to them.

Copyright 2015 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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