KANSAS CITY, Kan. -- A seven-year-old boy alerted the family he was staying with that their home was burning early Thursday morning in Kansas City, Kan.
The fire was reported at about 4 a.m. at the home in the area of South 42nd St. and Douglas Ave.
The boy was staying with the family while his mom had surgery. He was sleeping on the couch at the time and woke up to a smoke-filled house.
The mother of the home says she grabbed the boy, wrapped him up in a blanket and ran out the front door. Her husband, James, followed them, but when they got outside they realized they didn't have their cell phones.
James ran back into the house, but the phones were by the bed and the house was too hot by then to go any further. James grabbed his two dogs and threw the male dog out the window. The female dog who was two weeks away from delivering a litter, ran away out of fear and wouldn't move. She perished in the fire.
James jumped out the window and ran to a neighbor's home to call 911.
"No shoes on their feet or anything," said Dep. Chief Craig Duke, KCK Fire Public Information Officer. "They did lose one of their dogs in the fire. Was able to get one of them out but we found the second after we were able to get in and knock the fire out."
The Red Cross is helping the family, who have four other children ages 10, 13, 14, and 15-years old. The couple's four children were staying with relatives for the holidays.
"Without his waking up with the smoke and everything, this could have turned into something much worse," said Duke.
Duke said the family had an alarm system that they thought would alert them to any disturbances such as a fire.
A space heater is suspected to have caused the fire.