Knoxville, TN--Rocko has once again proved his resilience.
The 1 1/2 -year-old portly Chihuahua mix was believed to be lost after his owners fled an early morning fire that destroyed their South Knoxville home Monday.
Jake Douglas said he had just escaped the Phillips Avenue blaze with his 12-year-old son when he looked to see his dog run back inside toward the flames as the front door slammed shut behind him. "Then the fire exploded, and I could not get back in," Douglas said.
Douglas' two other teenage children and his fiancee were not at home at the time. The family's other dog - Dixie Belle, a Boston terrier puppy - didn't make it out.
"We thought we lost Rocko, too," he said.
The family originally adopted Rocko from a woman who had discovered the dog wandering along a roadway in the snow, Douglas said.
Within a couple of hours of the flames being extinguished, though, Rocko was spotted by the family's landlord outside the smoldering remains.
The family still doesn't know how the dog emerged unscathed, suffering a bit of smoke inhalation, but little else.
"He's a little survivor," Douglas said. "A little ray of sunlight in a big cloud of devastation."
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