Firefighters were called to a blaze in the Angus village of Invereighty on Saturday.
Six appliances were scrambled as part of attempts to douse the flames after residents of the afflicted cottage got out with the family dog and raised the alarm.
A number of guinea pig pets perished following the blaze at the cottage which broke out shortly before midday on Saturday.
Two appliances were sent from Forfar, one from Kingsway station in Dundee, one from MacAlpine Road in Dundee and a breathing apparatus unit from Balmossie station in Broughty Ferry were also called to the scene.
It is understood the fire caught hold in a bedroom in the single storey cottage in the hamlet which is just south of Forfar.
The fire was described as being 15 by 20 metres in size and two main jets were used initially before further assistance from neighbouring fire stations was requested.