May 17 (UPI) -- An Ohio family is crediting their cat with saving their lives after it alerted them to a carbon monoxide leak in their home.
David Kecskes of Covedale said he, his wife and their two children were sleeping in the early hours Tuesday when their normally quiet cat, Mr. Boo, woke them up with loud meowing.
"I woke up to my cat meowing. He never meows. He usually just squeaks or doesn't meow at all. It's actually kind of a joke in our family," Kecskes' daughter, Ariana, told WKRC-TV.
The family said they got out of bed just in time to see Boo faint from the gas inhalation.
"We just saw Boo fall and pass out right here," David Kecskes told WXIX-TV.
Ariana Kecskes said she believes the cat was trying to warn his humans about the carbon monoxide.
"He was sort of stumbling down the hallway and he just kept meowing. He seemed to kind of want us to get us out of the house," Kecskes said. "He passed out so many times trying to wake us all up and that's just amazing because he's never really meowed before. It's like he's been waiting his whole life to do this one heroic thing."
The family rushed to evacuate their house.
"My daughter fainted in the hallway, my son fainted on the back porch and our cat fainted in the living room. And I'm dizzy and my mom's dizzy. And my wife's dizzy," David Kecskes told 911 dispatchers.
The family members were taken to a hospital and later released. Mr. Boo and the family's other cat also recovered from the gas inhalation.
Green Township Fire Department Assistant Chief Kevin Hummeldorf said Mr. Boo likely saved his family's lives.
"Had this situation gone on much longer the outcome could have been different," he said. "It's colorless, it's odorless, it's tasteless, so it is a silent, it's a silent killer if you will."