'She saved my life' 83-year-old's adopted dog chases down suspected burglars

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AIKEN COUNTY, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) -- They say dogs are man's best friend, but for many people they're more than that.

Peggie Ergle, 83, found out the hard way. When burglars tried to break in to her home, her dog went into action.

They're seemingly inseparable.

"She's proved to be a life saver," Ergle said. "I'll tell you that."

If you didn't know, you might think Ergle and her dog, Sophie, have been together a long time.

"I went out to the Albrecht center and got her, and I haven't regretted it a minute," Ergle said.

Ergle brought the 2-year-old Jack Russell mix home in February.

"I really was wanting for companion type, you know, just to be with me, but she has really proved to be a good dog," Ergle said.

About a month later, Sophie proved to be a hero. On March 19, around 1 a.m., Ergle woke up with no power.

"About that time this big blast went off and when it did I said, 'Oh my goodness,' and I hollered, and I said, 'We gotta get out of here,'" Ergle said.

When she came to her back porch, she found her door on the floor, and Sophie was long gone.

"The door was laying flat on the floor," Ergle said. "I couldn't imagine what was going on."

Aiken County deputies responded and found evidence of a break-in.

"Every one of these wires were cut," Ergle showed in her backyard, "This and this was all laying out here on the ground."

Little did Ergle know, it was Sophie who chased down the suspected burglars long before she knew what had happened.

"They could have beat me up, and I would've suffered with pain. They could've killed me. I don't ever know what they would've done to me," Ergle said.

Ergle has made some changes since that day.

"I've got a security system, I got her, and I got a gun," said Ergle.

But really, it Sophie. You can bet she would do it again.

"She saved my life," said Ergle.

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