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Photos: Crowd Cheers As Firefighters Rescue Dog From Burning Building

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A crowd waited breathlessly as Santa Monica firefighters attempted to revive a dog that had been overcome by smoke inhalation. The good news: Stella the dog pulled through.

Firefighters responded Saturday morning to a fire at an apartment building at the corner of 2nd and Hill Street, according to KTLA 5.

Firefighters discovered the female boxer behind a mattress as they searched the five-unit structure for victims.

"If you walked in there and looked at it the first time through you wouldn't see it," Captain Jeff Furrows of the Santa Monica Fire Department—who didn't at first realize the dog, Stella, was a girl—told KTLA. "But he was obviously trying to get away, that's what his instincts told him to do," he said.

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Stella suffered smoke inhalation and was unconscious when firefighters carried her to safety. Luckily, they had a pet oxygen mask and placed it over Stella's muzzle.

A crowd watched and waited along with the rescue workers; 15 minutes later, the dog came around.

A boy who got caught up in the drama told KTLA, "Everybody got excited. It's a dog, man's best friend." A woman confessed, "I got very emotional."

Since Stella's owner was not home, she was taken to a Westside animal hospital to recover.

No one else was injured and the cause of the fire is under investigation.