Brevard firefighter adopts dog he rescued from house fire

Australian shepherd Smokey one of 13 rescued Aussies in Merritt Island fire

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – To answer the old question for pet owners, "Who saved who?", you might think this one is pretty cut and dried. 

Woody Sweet, after all, was one of the firefighters who saved 13 Australian shepherds from a house fire last week in Merritt Island.

But one week later, the fireman says in 14 years with Brevard Fire Rescue, this is a reward unlike anything he's experienced before.

"We deal with some things most of us don't care to talk about. It does help to have a dog as a companion to help you through those bad nights when you come home in the morning, put a smile on your face," Sweet said.

The fireman adopted Smokey after rescuing him from the fire, which killed 52 animals, including five dogs.

Seven of 13 Aussies that were rescued were taken to the SPCA in Titusville, where they're now up for adoption.

With the opportunity on the scene for first dibs, Sweet said he wanted to be more than a lifesaver for Smokey, he wanted to give him a forever home.

"Just an opportunity presented itself, I jumped on it," he said. "My kids have been asking for over a year now about getting a new dog. Now, we have Smokey."

And now, playing at a dog park in West Melbourne, Smokey can enjoy a lot more space than he ever had confined to a small house with 66 pets.

"This is about the dogs. We need to find a home for the seven dogs that are left," Sweet said.

If you'd like to own one of the rescued Aussies yourself, time is running out. The SPCA in Titusville said for the seven dogs they took in, they've already received more than 100 applications for adoption.


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