NEW CANAAN — A family dog helped save a family on Hemlock Hill Road after alerting them to a small fire that had started in their basement.

On Nov. 14 around 3 a.m., the New Canaan Fire Department responded to the Hemlock Hill Road home on a report of smoke in the basement. The family said the dog had alerted them to the smoke, followed by their fire alarm going off.

Using thermal imaging cameras, firefighters found a small fire behind a wall in the finished basement. They found that access to the fireplace ash dump had been walled over while the basement was being finished and the door to the ash pit was faulty and allowed the hot embers to fall into the wall cavity, triggering the fire.

The fire was extinguished quickly with minimal damage.

ekayata@hearstmediact.com; @erin_kayata