Dogs And Owner Reunite After a Deadly Fire Takes Their Home

Inspiration | By Julio Childress | December 16, 2018

Our pets are our family, even if they are a completely different species from us, so it's important that we protect them the same way we would our human brethren. In the case of a fire, us humans know what to do once we smell smoke, but for our four legged friends, they may end up confused.

When a blaze takes down a home, a family may not have time to rescue their pets, or the blaze might be too fierce for them to go back inside and risk their own lives. It's a major tragedy, and it can often end in a less-than-happy story. If your house burned down and your dog was nowhere to be found, what would you think?

Most people would have to come to terms with the fact that they have lost their family pet, as heartbreaking as that can be. Fortunately, our furry friends don't always give up so easily. In this story, a woman returned to her burnt down home to find her dog there waiting for her.

The Deadly Fires of Paradise, California

Last month the raging fires in Paradise, California and surrounding areas were absolutely devastating. Taking homes, wildlife, and land in a seemingly endless swirl of flames that took the lives of 85 people. One of the many victims of the fires in Paradise was Andrea Gaylord, who lost her house in the blaze. That's not all she lost though. She feared she lost something much more important: her dogs.

Andrea Gaylord's two dogs, a pair of brothers named Madison and Miguel, could not be found following the fire. She assumed the worst, knowing how deadly the fires had been. She explained her feelings to TODAY: "It was the worst feeling in the world. It's like you have to choose. The whole time I thought, 'What was going to happen to those dogs?' It was horrible."

Miguel is Rescued, but where is Madison?

Andrea Gaylor had no choice but to leave the dogs behind, unable to search for them. The entire area was under a complete shut down for the evacuees, so even those who wanted to check on their homes or their lost loved ones could not return to try and look for them. A month had passed and still no sign of the dogs, so Andrea could only assume the worst. Luckily there was some good news early on. Rescuers from K9 Paw Print Rescue found Miguel in Citrus Heights, a nearby town.

That made one dog accounted for, but the fact that Madison wasn't with Miguel was alarming. It was possible that Madison didn't make it. On December 6th, Gaylord was finally able to return back to her property, which is when this story has another fortunate turn.

Madison Guards the Burnt Down Property

Upon returning to her property, Gaylord found none other than Madison sitting on the burned rubble of the property waiting for his family. Gaylord was immediately stricken with relief. As she told TODAY, "It was like there is a higher power. It was like a sigh of relief. It was affirmation that these dogs are survivors." It turns out that the same rescuer who found Miguel had seen Madison and left food and water out for him, in lieu of being able to capture him.

Why would Madison stay waiting in the rubble? Sylvia Sullivan, the rescuer from K9 Paw Print Rescue who found Miguel explained to TODAY, "They don't see it as ashes. They see this as their home and those dogs protect their flock. And these people are their flock. They love those people."

Did You Know...


Not all celebrities have fame and fortune, some are just famous – and in a ton of debt. They came from rags to riches, then went back to rags. Whether they’ve filed bankruptcy, ended up in court, or just can’t stop spending, celebrities mismanage their money just like everyone else. They just hide it well.


50 Cent coined the term “wanksta,” then “partied like it was his birthday” until he filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2015. The rapper was said to be anywhere between $10 million and $50 million in debt. In 2016, a federal bankruptcy court judge in Connecticut approved a plan for the founder of G-Unit to pay his debts back. He was able to get his bankruptcy discharged in February of the following year.


Following a 45-year-long career in Hollywood, acting in more than 70 films, actor Gary Busey found himself in more debt than he was worth. In 2012, it was reported that Busey owed between $500,000 and $1 million worth of debt, but only had $50,000 to his name. The 74-year-old actor owed money to hospitals, banks, the L.A. Waterworks District, and even a storage company. He filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy that same year. Despite his longstanding career in Hollywood, Busey's net worth is now only $500,000.


Burt Reynolds is still worth five million dollars, but his battles with debt date back more than 20 years. Between bad investments and a pricey divorce from actress Loni Anderson, the 1970s superstar had to deal with over $10 million in debt and decided to file Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 1996. While testifying in a 1994 custody hearing, the South Florida native said he spent $40 million getting through his divorce.


The former Hollywood bad boy, Charlie Sheen owes the IRS nearly $5 million. But that's not all. In 2016, his net worth was reportedly still as high as $150 million, but he was nonetheless $12 million in debt at the time – including mortgages, legal fees, and taxes. That same year, reported Sheen owed nearly $300,000 on an American Express card alone.

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