MEMPHIS, Tenn. –A Shelby County couple says a smart smoke detector alerted them to a fire in the middle of the work day and helped firefighters rescue three dogs, a pet turtle, and a mouse.

The fire started inside the home on Ridge Walk in southeast Shelby County around 2:15 p.m. Tuesday after a heat lamp in the turtle’s tank malfunctioned.

Turtle tank after the fire

The woman who lives there didn’t want to be identified but said she got an alert on her phone as soon as her smoke alarms began going off.

“I’m so lucky I had my phone on my desk,” she said. “I immediately grabbed my stuff and called 911 and told them I needed fire help at my house because I got an alert on my phone there was smoke in my house and I was not close.”

She said she was about 30 minutes away, but it only took Shelby County Firefighters a few minutes to get there, and by the time she arrived, all the pets were out of the house, and the fire was out.

“I’m driving as fast as I can to get home. Of course, I see them beat me there. I was so relieved and watched them break in. They got in through my back door, and I was holding my breath, watching my backyard camera like; please let me see those dogs run outside, you know.”

She said they had a good deal of smoke and water damage to their home, but the fire was isolated to the turtle aquarium.

She said she was so thankful for the firefighters who got there so quickly and rushed in to get her animals and has no doubts that her Google Nest smoke detectors saved her beloved pets and home.

“In Memphis, we are all concerned about people breaking into our house, and so we have cameras and all that stuff, and that’s great, but this is another thing that can really ruin your life,” she said.

She said somehow, her turtle knew to move to the other side of its tank when the fire started and is no worse for the wear.