LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — A small dog was rescued from a house fire in Lafayette Friday morning that happened while the dog’s owners were away from home.

Firefighters with the Lafayette Fire Department (LFD) responded to a house fire in the 400 block of Woodrow St. at 9:55 a.m. Friday. The fire was caused by an apparent malfunction with the water heater, which caused a wood structure to catch on fire and spread.

When firefighters arrived, they noticed smoke coming from the roof of the house. Crews made entry into the home and located the fire in the attic toward the rear of the home. The fire was quickly extinguished.

A small dog was found inside the home and safely removed. The occupants were not home at the time of the fire.

Officials determined that the fire started in an outside storage closet for the water heater. There was an apparent malfunction with the water heater that caused the wood structure to catch on fire. The closet, attached to the home, ignited and the fire propagated to the attic. The fire was ruled an accident.

The fire caused substantial fire and smoke damage to the home.