Persistent Cat Saves Woman from House Fire

Life With Cats is reader-supported. We may earn a small commission through products purchased using links on this page.



In a lifesaving demonstration of ‘tortitude,’ a 2 1/2 year old Tortoiseshell cat named Taffy is credited with waking her owner by repeatedly biting the woman’s hand when their flat was on fire from an arson attack in the wee hours Thursday morning.

Bridgend, Wales UK resident Tracie Horgan-Hodgkiss was sound asleep when her front door was set on fire and the smoke alarm went off as the blaze spread and her flat filled with smoke.  “But I thought the alarm clock was going off and I kept hitting it, then I started to cough,” she said.

Sensing the danger, Taffy repeatedly bit Tracie’s hand until she was fully conscious and aware that the apartment was on fire.

“I poked my head out of the bedroom door and I could see smoke and flames around the front door. I was just thinking I want to get out of here and I felt for the telephone and grabbed it [to call 999, the UK equivalent of 911],” Tracie said.

When a crew from Bridgend Fire station arrived on the scene at about 1:30am, Tracie had her head out the bedroom window, and was gasping for air as she remained on the phone with fire service personnel.

Firefighters put a ladder up to the window and Tracie handed Taffy out to safety with a crew member who’d climbed up. “Then I heard them say it was my turn to be rescued, but then it all went a bit hazy,” she said.

Tracie was treated for smoke inhalation at the hospital after firefighters helped her to get out of the building.

Bridgend Fire Station watch manage said: “She was very lucky. We got there just at the right time.”

“I’d like to say thank you very much to the firefighters for coming to rescue me. And I am sorry that Taffy scrammed [scratched] one of them!”

A police spokesman said:  “A 39-year-old man from Bridgend has been arrested on suspicion of arson and remains in custody.”

“Taffy carried on biting my hand until I woke up,” Tracie said. ” I don’t think I’d be here now but for her.”



Leave a Comment