Homeowner's dogs alert her to disastrous house fire - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

Homeowner's dogs alert her to disastrous house fire

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A Tyler family's home is destroyed, but the homeowner who was asleep at the time the fire started is just fine, and gives thanks to her faithful watchdogs.

Around 3 a.m. Thursday, firefighters were called out to a home in the 1000 block of West 34th Street in North Tyler.The once white house with blue shutters is now a charred pile of memories. You can see right through the home and across the street.

Wednesday night when Tona Mackey was sleeping, her five dogs tried alerted her to the fire.

"I heard my dogs barking. I thought it was, like always... they're always barking at the other dogs and cats around here. So, I covered my head up with my cover and went on back to sleep," she says.

When she woke up again, they were still barking.

"I pulled the cover off. I smelled smoke and I looked up at the ceiling with my phone [light]," Tona says.

Her bedroom was filling with smoke.

"When I came out of the room, I looked in this room here... it was just engulfed in flames. When I looked down the hallway, all of that was on fire," she says.

Tona called the fire department and ran to her neighbor's house. They helped her get the dogs from behind the house, to safety

The fire department told her an electrical fire started in her daughter's bedroom. Tona is thankful no one was sleeping there last night.

"I'm glad she wasn't here... and mostly my grand kids. At least one of them will usually be here, and he usually stays the night and stuff. So, I'm glad he wasn't here," she says.

Until she can get back on her feet, she and her dogs will stay with family.

"I kind of credit [the dogs] for my life this time. I really do," says Tona.

Despite what happened, Tona and her family were smiling Thursday because she's safe and they know everything will be alright. Tona and her family have lived in the home since 2009. They do not have homeowner's insurance.

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