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She Adopted a Stray Dog and Weeks Later He Saved Her Life

A dog credited with saving his family from a house fire was honored on Friday.

Earl was celebrated during a ceremony at the Petco store in Ft. Wright, and was adopted by his owner, Kristina, through the store's Stray Animal Adoption Program in June. Weeks later, Earl took action that saved his new parent'slife.

From the moment Kristina saw Earl at Petco, she said that she felt an instant connection - and how she knows why.

“I totally believe Earl came to me for a reason,” she said. “I just think there’s a reason why something drove me to fill out the application to adopt him, and a reason we were chosen.”

On Thursday, July 7, Kristina was doing laundry at her home when she dozed off on the couch while waiting for clothes to dry. The next thing she knew, Earl was urgently licking her face - and the house was engulfed in flames.

“It all happened so quickly,” Kristina remembered. “It wasn’t until I had Earl and our other dog both safe in the car that the emotions came and I realized how scary it was.”

Kristina said that Earl saved her life that night.

For his bravery and heroism, Earl was given a $500 Petco shopping experience on Friday courtesy of the Petco Foundation and Stray Animal Adoption Program.

“At the Petco Foundation, we always say that Love Changes Everything when you adopt a pet. Earl’s story is an extraordinary example of how adopting a pet not only saves the pet’s life, but in Kristina’s case, saved her life too,” said Petco Foundation executive director Susanne Kogut. “And love is why every day, we work in partnership with more than 4,000 animal welfare organizations across the country to help bring pets in need together with loving people—with 5 million pets adopted and counting.”

For more information about Stray Animal Adoption Program or the Petco Foundation, visit or

-Staff report

Photos by Lisa Binns of Shelter Dog Photography (provided)

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