A Santa Rosa Beach home was destroyed by a fire on Monday. Firefighters with the South Walton Fire District arrived to find seven puppies that had escaped the blaze.

SANTA ROSA BEACH — A pack of puppies escaped the flames of a structure fire unscathed Monday.


According to Sammy Sanchez, fire marshal for South Walton Fire District, the fire occurred at a home on Gator Lane.


"We don’t know what time the fire started," he said, adding that the owner wasn’t home and a bystander notified the district about 4 p.m.


"It’s a weird fire. It’s not normally how we get called in, but that’s how this one went down. ... Nobody noticed this place was burning."


Firefighters arrived to find the home burnt to the ground. Fortunately, no one was home or hurt.


"There really wasn’t a whole lot to investigate because it’s just burned completely down," Sanchez said.


The puppies were outside the house near the porch and had apparently broken free from whatever barrier they were behind, Sanchez added.


A post on the district’s Facebook page said the pups were returned to their owner.


"They didn’t show any outward signs of being injured so I watched them for about 10 minutes, jumping on each other and playing like puppies just to be sure," Sanchez wrote in a text. "They were cute ... (I) could have taken one or all seven home."