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Family dog passes away after shielding 8-month-old from fire

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An 8-month-old infant is in serious condition after a fire late Sunday in Baltimore. The girl is alive today thanks to an act of heroism and a heart-breaking loss for her family.

BALTIMORE, Md. – An 8-month-old baby girl is alive thanks to an act of heroism by the family’s dog, WBAL reports.

Erika Poremski told WBAL that she had quickly stepped out of the house to run to her car when her home caught fire.

With her 8-month-old daughter, Viviana, still inside, Poremski attempted to go back inside to rescue her.

“I just heard her crying and i couldn’t get to her,” Poremski said. “I tried really hard, everyone in the neighborhood tried. They were kicking the doors in and kicking the windows out. I couldn’t (get her out). Nobody could.”

Poremski burned her hands and face from the repeated attempts.

Firefighters eventually arrived and rushed into the home to rescue the infant.

When they found her, they found Poremski’s dog, Polo, in the room with her.

Firefighters say Polo was covering the baby with his body, WBAL reports.

“She only had burns on her side because of it,” Poremski said. “He stayed with her the whole time in the bedroom and wouldn’t even come downstairs to get out the door.”

Viviana was rushed to the hospital with severe burns to her face, arm and side.

Polo did not survive the fire, WBAL reports.

“He was my first baby and now I lost him,” Poremski said. “And I’m just praying I don’t lose her. She’s all I have and it just happened so fast, I just don’t understand it. I just don’t know why this stuff happens.”

Poremski told the news station that her daughter remains in serious condition at the local hospital.

A GoFundMe page has been set up for the family.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.