A MARCH dog owner is warning others to be aware after her much-loved puppy was left fighting for life following a house fire.
Emma Pape has issued the warning after a touch-screen hob was turned on by accident and ignited a fire in a chip pan in her kitchen
The state-of-the-art hob was installed at the family home in Dagless Way, earlier this year as part of a new kitchen.
But it soon became obvious the hob was a hazard when the family’s pet cats walked across it and accidently switched on.
“Luckily I was in the house and realised what had happened and turned it off. Since then I have always turned it off at the mains because I was worried that it would get turned on and set fire to something.
“Unfortunately on Saturday my partner forgot to turn it off at the mains before we went out. We had shut Aero, our chocolate Labrador, in the kitchen to stop him chewing baubles off the Christmas tree.
“One of our three cats has walked over the hob and turned it on. Unfortunately the hob that came on had a pan of oil on it.
“We were out for about and hour and 40 minutes and when we got back we found the house full of toxic white smoke. The cats had managed to get out through the cat flap but poor Aero was trapped in the smoke-filled kitchen.
“At first he seemed OK but the effects hit him later and he had to be hospitalised at the vets. The smoke has left him very poorly and the vets are not sure whether or not he will pull through,” said Emma, whose three children: Joshua (10), Caleb (7) and four-year-old Amber-Lily have been devastated by seven-month-old Aero’s illness.
She said: “The hob seemed really impressive when we got it. But it is not a good idea at all. It is supposed to have a child-lock on it, but that has never worked, and the only way to ensure it doesn’t get turned on accidentally is to turn off at the main.
“I would warn anyone thinking of getting one of these hobs to think again. Luckily the fire happened during the day, and the pan only burst into flames once we lifted the lid. But it could have happened at night, when we were asleep - and that is a really scary thought,” added Emma, who said they were now hoping people would help pay for Aero’s treatment at Amical Vets.
“We hadn’t got around to insuring him, and the treatment is likely to cost £1,000s which we haven’t got. I would ask anyone, who would like to help to contact the vets and make a donation - we will be extremely grateful for any help people can give,” added Emma.