Photo courtesy Pickens County Fire Marshal
A rescue worker gives oxygen to one of Misty Register’s nine dogs that were stuck inside her burning mobile home Thursday.
Three dogs saved the life of their owner last week, alerting her as flames tore through a rented mobile home while she was sleeping.
Chorkies (Chihuahua and Yorkie mixed breeds) Half Pint, Junior, and Shotzy are credited with saving Misty Register’s life after a fire started at the
back porch of her mobile home on Clearview Lane near Walmart.
“She was fortunate the dogs alerted her,” said Fire Marshal Curtis Clark.
Register was asleep in the back bedroom when three of her dogs jumped on her chest and started barking.
“It all started around noon,” Register said. “I had been working the night shift so I just happened to be laying down at the time. If it hadn’t been for my dogs barking I wouldn’t have made it because the fire had already traveled through the ceiling. My daughter, thank God, was at school at the time.”
Register said by the time she got up, a large part of the mobile home was engulfed by flames.
“The whole back side of the wall was on fire,” she said. “I opened my back door and I just started throwing my animals out.”
Register, who has nine dogs and one cat, said she went around to the front of the house and two of her dogs ran back inside. She started after them when a bystander who had seen the smoke stopped her from returning to the burning home.
“The fire department got there pretty quick and they found all my animals,” she said. “A couple of them were right at lifeless.”
Her cat, Smoky, was barely moving when Fire Marshal Clark found him while investigating the cause of the fire. Clark said the cat, which he assumed was dead was lying beside his bowl with his paw stuck in the water like he was trying to get to it. As he approached, the cat moved.
EMS and fire personnel rescued the animals that ran back inside the house, giving chest compressions to one dog and using a specially designed oxygen mask on three of the dogs. Fire crews are prepared for pets affected by fire and smoke.
“It’s not a rare thing that we run into animals still in homes on fire,” Clark said.
The dogs were transported to Wayside Animal Hospital where they were treated at no charge.
“Wayside saved them. They put them in an oxygen tent and they were able to save them and they were all safe,” Register said. “I bottle fed these babies from the moment they were born and now they’ve saved my life.”
Register was able to salvage most of her clothes and personal items from the home before a small section of the roof caved in. All of her furniture was lost, according to fire reports.
“Fire’s a sad thing. You don’t get it back from fire,” Clark said.
The Red Cross provided gift cards for clothing and supplies and put the mother and daughter up for two nights at a local hotel.
However, Register, whose husband passed away this fall, isn’t sure what she and her daughter will do now.
“My husband died recently. We buried him on September 7th and my daughter, Katherine, is a senior at Pickens High School. She graduates in May. Home Depot hired me and I’m grateful for that but I’m not sure where we will go or what we will do now,” she said.
Register said she plans to stay with a friend for a couple of days until she can figure something else out.
If you’d like to help this family, contact Register at 678-517-7382.
Pickens County Fire and Rescue, along with fire departments from the city of Jasper, Talking Rock, and Grandview all responded to the fire.