An elderly dog went missing after a fire tore through a flat on Miswell Lane in the early hours of this morning.
The dog, which answers to the name of Gerald, disappeared after he and owner Paula Goodman were victims of a fire which started at their home in Tring.
Her son Matthew Goodman made an appeal for locals to keep an eye out for the Jack Russell terrier cross, as he is thought to have bolted after the door was opened in the commotion.
Matthew, who lives in Wigginton, said: “The firefighters searched the place about three times, and they were 100 per cent positive he wasn’t in there. We reckon he got scared, was scratching at the door to get out, and bolted when my mum opened it.”
It’s still not known exactly what caused the fire, but Matthew believes it could have been either a cigarette or a candle.
He said: “Mum sometimes has candles going, and she also smokes, so it could have been either of those things, but the firefighters said they’ll never know excatly what caused it. It was purely accidental.”
Paula also suffers from diabetes, and Matthew believes she went into a hypo – where her blood sugar levels drop causing her to pass out – and that’s when the fire started.
She awoke disorientated to the sound of the smoke alarm and managed to get out of the house before alerting neighbours. Fire crews responded to the call just after 2am and brought the fire under control. No-one was hurt in the blaze, but after an extensive search, they couldn’t find Gerald.
Matthew said: “We think he’s scared and probably just hiding somewhere. He’s an elderly little dog. The only place he really knows is the park where we take him for walks, on Miswell Lane. We want people to keep an eye out for him in that area.”
Gerald’s coat is a creamy white colour, and he has grey whiskers around his chin. If anyone sees him, Matthew asks them to try and keep Gerald with them until they have called him on 07449 355354.