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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Cat Saves Couple from Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

By Maria Croce, http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/

When Ian and Sheila Wallace dozed off in their living room, they didn't realize they were being slowly poisoned by deadly fumes from their faulty gas fire.

Then the couple's pet cat Felix started tapping the edge of the fire with his paws, waking them with the noise - and saving their lives.

The Wallaces suffered carbon monoxide poisoning when pigeons fell down their chimney and blocked the air cycle from their gas fire, which also hadn't been fitted correctly.

The fumes weren't filtering properly and deadly carbon monoxide fumes had been seeping into the couple's living room.

They fell into a deep sleep from the deadly fumes when, luckily, Sheila was woken by their cat Felix tapping his paws on the edge of the faulty fire.

The noise roused Sheila and she then woke her husband, and realized something must be wrong with the fire.

Sheila said: "If it hadn't been for the cat we might have been dead. He was a rescue cat and he ended up rescuing us.

"I remember dozing off and the cat started throwing itself at the edge of the fire. He could hear a pigeon that had fallen down the chimney and was tapping the front with his paws. The noise woke me up, then I woke up my husband.

"I hate to think what might have happened if the cat hadn't been in.

Ian added: "The fire hadn't been working properly and we'd called someone out to mend it. It turned out they hadn't replaced it properly. Pigeons had also got into the chimney and restricted the air flow. We'd been nodding off in the living room, but we put it down to old age. It turns out it was the carbon monoxide."

Now Ian and Sheila have a carbon monoxide detector. "It's such a relief we're okay," said Ian.

Carbon monoxide is known as the silent killer because you can't see it, hear it, smell it or taste it.


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