The blaze was reported at 5:17 a.m. in the area of Dublin and Emerald Isle drives, according to the Glendale Fire Department, which dispatched 13 units to the scene.
Three Glendale Police Department officers were first to arrive at the 3,000-square-foot house. They used a ladder provided by a neighbor to rescue the homeowner from the second floor, according to officials.
"With that adrenaline pumping, and the rush that happens when you see someone screaming from a balcony, you're going to do everything possible to try to rescue that person," said Tahnee Lightfoot, spokeswoman for the police and fire departments. "And that's what they did."
Witnesses said the woman was distraught because the family's dog was still inside the house. The animal perished in the blaze.
"From our window we could see just flames everywhere -- huge flames, something I've never seen before," neighbor Sharis Ayazjoo said.
The victim and her three rescuers were each transported to a hospital with minor injuries. Her husband was out of town on a business trip at the time of the incident.
Meanwhile, firefighters were forced to assume a defensive position when the house's roof collapsed.
As they gained control of the structure fire, stubborn flames erupted from a car parked in the driveway. Fire department personnel doused the vehicle for more than five minutes as the blaze persisted; they eventually used power tools to pry open the hood before fully extinguishing the fire.
The cause of the fire was not immediately known. Arson investigators responded to the location and launched an investigation.
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