ROWAYTON - Thanks to her dog, Priscilla Ryan says she is alive after her house caught fire Thursday morning.

Ryan says she fell asleep and accidentally left something on the stove in the kitchen. She says her German shepherd mix kept the house fire from turning deadly by waking her.

"She just stuck her big wet black nose in my face and licked me a couple of times. That's the way she is - just really affectionate," Ryan says.

With the help of Cassi, the dog, Ryan rushed to get her other pets outside as she dialed 911.

"If it weren't for her, we'd probably all have passed away from smoke inhalation," she says.

Ryan says she now needs to find foster parents to care for her 12 kittens, which are only a few weeks old.

The kittens are staying with the PAWS shelter in Norwalk, but Ryan hopes they will find new owners soon.