Well-wishers have raised thousands to help a north-east couple left homeless when a blaze tore through their house and killed their beloved pet dog.
Callum and Melissa Martin had left their property in Balmedie for only 20 minutes when a distressed neighbour called to say it had gone up to flames.
The couple rushed home and could only watch in horror as firefighters attempted to resuscitate pet dog Luna.
They were only allowed to come close once the crews realised the Rottweillier/Alsatian cross could not be saved.
Mr Martin last night said “perfect” Luna could never be replaced.
The dog, who was nearly five years old, had been abandoned as a puppy and was adopted by the couple as they moved from Aberdeen to Balmedie.
Luna even threatened to steal the show at Mr and Mrs Martin’s wedding at Meldrum House, as she proudly wore a piece of Mr Martin’s tartan round her neck.
Mr Martin said: “She was a perfect dog. We initially tried to keep her as a downstairs dog when we got her, but on the first night she vaulted over two kitchen chairs and up into our bedroom.
“There was a bond straight away.”
Luna has since been buried in the garden of Mrs Martin’s parents house in Inverurie, where the couple are now living while their own home remains uninhabitable.
They are now facing a “long road” until they are able to rebuild their house.
Severe smoke damage remains in most rooms while the kitchen and conservatory were completely destroyed in the blaze on August 10.
Mr Martin’s brother Luke has created a fundraiser to help the couple who have been described as having “hearts of gold”.
Desperate to help, well-wishers have pledged more than £10,000 towards the £20,000 target to help them get back on their feet.
Mr Martin, who met his wife at university in Aberdeen, added: “Melissa and I have been absolutely humbled and awestruck by the kindness of our friends, family and community at a time when we have truly hit rock bottom.
“Words simply cannot express our gratitude to those who have come to our aid physically, emotionally and financially during this time.
“I hope, if nothing else, it makes others consider their own home safety situation.
“I would not wish our plight on any other individual, it has been a massive struggle and the devastation of losing Luna continues to take its toll as she was so much more than a pet for us.
“Melissa and I have both thrived as individuals since having Luna as she brought out the best in us and gave us the confidence to take on new challenges, knowing we’d always have her to come home to.”
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