A Washington toddler who died in a house fire was found with his dog and teddy bear next to him, and authorities believe the dog tried to protect the boy, the AP reports. The dog, a terrier mixed breed, also died in the fire that broke out at about 11:30pm Friday in Spokane, fire department spokesperson Brian Schaeffer says. Three other children and two adults escaped from the blaze.
The boy's dog stayed behind in an attempt to protect him, firefighters believe. The fire was so intense that it melted the metal on the frame of the boy's bed, Schaeffer says. The battery in the house's smoke detector had been removed and it was not working, he says. The cause of the fire is under investigation and police are investigating the child's death. (Read more dog stories.)