Massachusetts: Dog reports fire, saves house

Robert Lane and his dog, Max

In Ipswich, Massachusetts yesterday, a dog escaped from his leash, discovered a fire, then like Lassie, barked at his 13-year old master and led him to the fire.

Like a scene out of “Lassie,” Robert Lane, 13, followed his barking dog yesterday to a brush fire burning in the woods behind the family’s home, then ran to a vernal pool to soak his T-shirt in water to try to put out the 10-foot circle of flames.

“I just wanted to get it out as fast as possible,” Robert said.

Discovering the fire was bigger than he thought, Robert ran home to tell his mother, who called the Fire Department at 12:30 p.m. If not detected early by Robert and the family dog, Max, who had escaped its leash, the brush fire could have easily spread and damaged the home and construction business located on their property at 285 High St., David Lane said.

“It could’ve been 10 times worse,” David Lane said by phone last night. “If it wasn’t for the dog getting off the leash, we wouldn’t have a house.”

Firefighters from six communities were able to contain the fire to a 400-by-800 foot area of woods, about three-quarters of an acre, on property across from the Dow Brook Reservoir, said Ipswich firefighter Lee Prentiss. Lane’s antique horse-drawn manure spreader was destroyed, but an estimated 30 to 40 pieces of his equipment were not damaged.

From the Salem News. Photo courtesy of the Daily News.

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