A pet cat who woke up his owners when a van was set on fire outside their Aberdeenshire home has been hailed a hero.
Ginger-and-white tom J Lo meowed so loud he woke Elizabeth Kidd who discovered flames and black smoke pouring from the vehicle parked feet from her front door.
Yesterday Mrs Kidd said there was no doubt her quick-thinking moggy had saved the day.
She said: “He’s the hero in this situation. It would have been a lot worse if he hadn’t woken me up because our brand-new car was parked right behind the van and we had to move it.
“My neighbours’ car was also parked in the driveway so we woke them and they moved it out of the way.
“I suppose maybe eventually we would have started to smell the burning but I don’t know.
“Every time I see him I think, I owe my life to him.
“The strange thing is he normally goes out at night so it was unusual that he was in the house.”
The Vauxhall Combo, which belongs to Mrs Kidd’s husband Edward, 59, was parked outside their home in Broomhill Court, Kingseat, near Newmachar, when it was set alight at shortly before 3am on Saturday night.
Mrs Kidd said: “My cat was pawing me and meowing at the side of the bed. He woke me up.
“When I opened the front door to let him out I realised the van was on fire.
“It was parked on the driveway very close to the house.
“Because of the tyres, there was black smoke everywhere.
“I called the fire brigade straight away.
“There was quite a commotion.”
A fire engine from Dyce attended and firefighters used a hose reel jet to bring the fire under control at shortly before 4am, but the van, which retired Mr Kidd had been restoring, was completely destroyed.
The couple’s front door and guttering were also left melted and cracked by the flames.
Mrs Kidd said it was the second time fireraisers had struck at the property.
A shed was burned to the ground in their back garden seven months ago.
She said: “I’ve got no idea what happened but I really hope that the police find out.
“People are really anxious and worried because it has happened before.
Yesterday police appealed for anyone with information to contact them on 101, or Crimestoppers, anonymously on 0800 555 111.