Barking dog, 12-year-old girl may have saved Duluth family

Firefighters saved the house Wednesday night after the garage was destroyed by flames.

Fire truck
Photo illustration, Shutterstock, Inc.

DULUTH — A 12-year-old girl may have saved her family, their dog and their house after a garage fire late Wednesday night.

The Duluth Fire Department was called to a fire on the 4100 block of Chambersburg Avenue in the Duluth Heights neighborhood at 10:14 p.m. Wednesday, according to a news release from the fire department. They arrived to find the garage engulfed in flames. The garage was very close to the two-story house and attached by a vestibule.

Fire department officials said the girl was awakened to the fire because the family's dog, a yellow Labrador named Dudley, was barking in the garage where his kennel was located. After looking out her bedroom window and seeing the flames, the girl alerted the rest of her sleeping family. All four family members escaped without injury and called 911, the news release said.

The father then searched for Dudley, which was also able to escape. The dog had some singed fur, but was doing well as of Wednesday night.

“The quick action of this young girl definitely saved more damage to the structure,’’ the fire department noted, adding there was no damage to the house and the family is still residing there. Initial damage estimates to the garage and its contents are $80,000.


The temperature at the time of the fire was about 6 degrees above zero. Crews from Duluth Heights, Headquarters, Spirit Valley and Lincoln Park neighborhoods responded to the fire. There were no injuries to firefighters.

The fire is being investigated by the Duluth Fire Marshal’s office.

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