About twenty years ago, a good friend of mine, Larry, had a black lab that loved chasing and retrieving stick, balls, squirrels etc. But as a playful dog also loved being chased.
Anyways, we were in the barnyard burning some brush and branches that we had cleared previously. We set the fire far enough from the barn so as not to cause any catastrophes. But as the brush pile went down the sticks got farther from the fire, thus we started to toss branches and twigs farther to reach the fire.
Little did we know that "Randy" the lab was watching excitedly. Stick after stick went flying past him. Longing to do what labs do best, instinct took over and he charged after a stick that Larry threw.
Unfortunately, in his excitement, he grabbed a short branch from the fire and ran with it. I saw it first and chased after the dog cursing. Larry also freaked out and joined the chase. This just thrilled the dog.
Now he was running everywhere with this flaming branch.
We had the dog cornered and the thankfully the flames died down to coals on the stick end. Carefully we approached the dog talking low and cursing it sweetly.
Larry reached out slowly for the stick. But the dog knew better and off he went...STRAIGHT INTO THE BARN!!! Screaming, we gave chase as the dog ran straight to the fresh bails of hay and lay down.
But as we caught up with him and stamped out the fire he ran and started more fires. With no water, and a super dry barn our fight was lost.
The fire spread fast and furiously. And while we were fighting valiantly, the stupid dog was smart enough to leave and ran to the barnyard, still with the now smouldering stick. We escaped and could only watch from a distance as the barn burned to the ground.
Larry built a new barn and started anew.
The dog still goes after sticks and squirrels.
But during brush fires, he was chained up.
Just to be safe.