PLEASANT RIDGE PLANTATION — Herbert Hingley was asleep at his home early Wednesday when he heard his dog, Babe, barking.

A Brittany spaniel who is less than a year old, Babe jumped on her owner and started pawing at his face. That got him fully awake, and the 73-year-old retired builder realized his house was on fire and was filling with smoke.

“She’s a young dog, but she’s smart,” Hingley said. “She came in whacking me with her paws like she does when she wants to go out. She knew there was something wrong so she came over to get me.”

The fire at 205 Rowe Pond Road, which Hingley reported from a neighbor’s house at around 2:30 a.m., destroyed the house he remodeled himself about 10 years ago. He also lost many of his belongings, but Hingley and Babe, as well as nine other hunting dogs that Hingley keeps in a kennel, were unharmed.

Fire Chief David Robinson said it was fortunate that Babe was able to wake up Hingley, who lives by himself, is hard of hearing and might not have heard the smoke detectors going off.

“I wouldn’t want to say positively that he wouldn’t have made it out, but it was definitely a big assistance in him getting out alive and unhurt,” Robinson said.

Firefighters from Pleasant Ridge Plantation and Bingham were at the scene for nearly five hours as they struggled in temperatures that approached 10 below zero to get water to the remote location, Bingham Fire Chief Scott Lawyerson said.

“A lot of the rural areas around here have no hydrant systems and everything is frozen over, so it’s hard to get water,” Lawyerson said. “It was a battle just to keep things from freezing let alone keep water flowing. The crews did a really good job.”

Before Wednesday, Pleasant Ridge Plantation, which is home to about 84 people, had not had a structure fire reported since 2007, Davidson said. The cause of the fire is unknown, but it is believed to have originated near a wood stove, Lawyerson said. Hingley said he has insurance and he will stay at the nearby Pine Grove Lodge, a cabin rental and guide service where he volunteers with the Wounded Warrior Project. He also has family from Rhode Island coming to help him.

“I lost everything. Everything’s gone,” Hingley said. A passionate outdoorsman, Hingley lost a dozen hunting guns and thousands of hand-tied fishing flies. His hunting dogs stay in a kennel attached to the garage, which is separate from the house and wasn’t damaged.

“I don’t have anything left, but you can’t replace your life and it was close,” Hingley said, adding that he was grateful for Babe. “I can’t go nowhere without her or she gets mad. It’s like a wife.”