Source: Het Nieuwsblad, Belgium, 26 December 2015

Diksmuide — “We wouldn’t be here now if it hadn’t been for our Maxi.” The tomcat belonging to Jacques Vermeersch (63) and Marleen Onraedt (59) from Diksmuide in Belgium woke up his owners as fire raged through their utility room. Thanks to their pet the couple made it out of the house safely.
Around 4am on Saturday morning Maxi stood at his owners’ bedside meowing loudly. Jacques Vermeersch explains: “It wasn’t the first time Maxi woke us up. Sometimes he does it because he’s hungry, but never this early in the morning. So at first we were annoyed with our cat and told him it was way too early. But Maxi kept on meowing, so eventually Marleen got up and walked downstairs with him. That’s when she noticed all the smoke and discovered the fire in the utility room.”

Heavy fire

The fire was rather heavy and left substantial damage to the utility room which housed the dryer and the washing machine that caused the fire. “Some of the ceiling beams are deeply charged and in places severely damaged by the fire. Any other appliances in the room were broken or melted due to the heat. Even the windows cracked.”

Thankfully firefighters managed to put out the flames pretty swiftly.

Maxi the hero

“Imagine if the smoke had reached our bedroom. It would have killed us, for sure. Maxi is our hero. We have already had him for nine years, but we will be sure to spoil him even more from now on. We wouldn’t be here if it hadn’t been for him.

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