A Berkshire couple returned home to find their house had been set on fire by their 70-year-old tortoise. Emma Fox had brought Fred, a female tortoise, inside when she came out of hibernation early, reports The Sun.
Emma, 30, and partner Paul Butler, 45, left Fred in a tank under a heat lamp to keep her warm enough to stay alive. But Fred piled her dry straw under the lamp and it caught alight, spreading flames through the house.
Emma, who also has a dog and two baby tortoises, said: "We were out shopping when we got a call from the fire brigade saying that our tortoise had set the house on fire. Luckily our neighbour had heard the smoke alarm go off and called the fire brigade. There's a lot of smoke damage. We need to replace all our furniture and front door, but all our animals survived. It could have been worse."
Emma, of Bracknell, added: "She means the world to me - even if she did almost burn the house down."