Heroic dogs save owners from deadly blaze at HCMC apartment block

By Staff reporters   March 24, 2018 | 11:24 pm PT
Heroic dogs save owners from deadly blaze at HCMC apartment block
Xuka and her pup suffer from minor burns. Photo via Danny Nguyen.
These brave pooches are definitely a man's best friend.

Danny Nguyen and his wife have their loyal Alaskan Xuka and husky Siu to thank for their lives.

The couple was sleeping in their apartment on the first floor of the Carina Plaza last Friday when the building went up in flames, sending thick black smoke upwards. The two dogs started scratching the bedroom door and barking in the middle of the night, waking up Danny and his five-month pregnant wife.

“We opened the door to find the living room filled with smoke,” Danny recalled. “I only had time to help my wife run downstairs before the fire reached our floor.”

The building’s fire alarms reportedly did not go off when the fire broke out.

“Siu remained calm and stayed with us the whole time,” the 29-year-old added.

But Xuka and her pup were nowhere to be found when Danny and his wife got to safety.

“I had a sister living with her family on the ninth floor as well, so I ran back to help them and find Xuka and her pup, but I fainted in the thick smoke,” said Danny, who was later taken to hospital.

Luckily, the two brave dogs were found hiding in the bedroom by a family friend, having suffered minor burns.

“They were our saviors,” he said. “If they hadn't started barking, we could have been burnt alive.”

All saved: Xuka and her pup were brought outside of the building.

All saved: Xuka and her pup outside the building.

The Carina Plaza fire killed 13 people and injured 28, making it the city’s deadliest blaze in the last 15 years.

Another four-footed hero of the night was a poodle named Kem, who saved the family of 16th-floor resident Nguyen Thi Thu Hong. Kem jumped on her owners’ bed and barked loudly when the smoke reached the apartment.

As they tried to escape, Kem would not leave the house. The family soon realized why: the stairs were filled with smoke and were too hot to run down. All four of the family decided to close the door to block more smoke from coming in and rushed to the balcony to call for help.

Hong shared the story on her Facebook.

Hong shared the story on her Facebook page.

At 4 a.m. in the morning they were rescued from the building in a fire lift.

“Kem is our hero,” Hong said on Facebook. “We love you very much, Kem.”

The cause of the fire has yet to be determined.

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