Dogs saved in house blaze

Kathleen Howard and Jess the Jack Russell, who was rescued from her smoke-filled Lostock Gardens home
Kathleen Howard and Jess the Jack Russell, who was rescued from her smoke-filled Lostock Gardens home
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A woman who set out to cook her pack of Jack Russells a steak dinner ended up having her pampered pooches rescued by firefighters.

Chip, Gizmo and Jess were looking forward to tucking into freshly-cooked steak – but found themselves facing mortal danger when their owner, Kathleen Howard, 63, accidentally left the pan on the cooker in her South Shore home.

Kathleen Howard's Lostock Gardens home after the fire. Firefighters had to break down the door to free her three Jack Russells

Kathleen Howard's Lostock Gardens home after the fire. Firefighters had to break down the door to free her three Jack Russells

Mum-of-four Miss Howard said: “I only slipped out for 20 minutes to help my daughter-in-law move some odds and ends and I completely forgot I had left the pan on a low heat.

“I said to her, ‘oh hell, two fire engines have just gone past’. Then I thought, oh my goodness, my dogs!

“My stomach was in my throat and I wanted to be sick.”

Fire crews from South Shore and St Annes were called to Miss Howard’s Lostock Gardens home at around 9.25pm on Tuesday after next-door neighbour Sharon Burns, 47, reported hearing a fire alarm.

Gizmo and Chip the Jack Russells

Gizmo and Chip the Jack Russells

She said: “I went round and knocked on the door and I heard the dogs barking.

“I had visions of them all being unconscious on the floor.”

Fearing the worst, retired business manager Miss Howard rushed home, where she was reunited with her beloved pets, who had been saved from the smoke-filled property by firefighters.

She said: “They dived on me, all three of them. I was crying with relief.

“Now they’ve been fed and watered and all three of them are sleeping on my bed.

“The fire was all smoke from the pan. There wasn’t any damage, just the smell of smoke and dust. I’ve just got to clean up now.

“I said to my daughter-in-law I must have been a right wicked thing in a past life for this to happen!

“I’m just glad the fire brigade was called when they were.”