Trending: Pet Oxygen Masks for Firefighters

By on September 3, 2014

We recently let readers know of a successful Citizinvestor (citizen investor) project in Omaha which raised $1,600 needed to equip Omaha first responders with oxygen masks that fit pets. If you haven’t read about the project, click here.

In the past few days, the concept of emergency response for animals and the use of oxygen masks has come into my mind three times.

First, I have a friend who is a lieutenant with an area fire department and he told me of a house fire in which two dogs and two parrots died. I thought, maybe a mask could have helped in that situation. Maybe a mask wouldn’t help there, but there has been or will be other opportunities for firefighters to use masks like these. They should all have them is the point…

The second occurrence related to these pet oxygen masks came from a story I read out of Great Britain detailing a fire at a dog kennel The entire building was ablaze and “Two women with slight smoke inhalation were given precautionary checks at the scene by ambulance crews…one dog was given oxygen by fire crews,” the story said. It’s great to see a story in which oxygen masks have successfully treated animals. Hopefully, more stories like this pop up and the idea of saving an animal via oxygen isn’t “news,” it becomes typical. Read the article here.

Thirdly, a story similar to the Omaha project mentioned before, appeared in my Google news feed. The article details an Oregon project aimed at saving the lives of pets exposed to smoke during fires. Here’s the lead from the article:

“When firefighters respond to a house fire in the Eugene-Springfield area, they’ll now be better prepared to rescue not only human victims of smoke inhalation, but furry friends in distress as well.

Casey, the Eugene Springfield Fire department’s official fire safety Dalmatian, was on hand Wednesday at Fire Station No. 5 on Springfield’s Pheasant Street to demonstrate one of 35 new companion animal oxygen masks donated to the fire department by the McKenzie Cascade Dog Fanciers Club.

The masks will be dispersed to all of the department’s first response units, available so that when rescuers come across a pet in need of assistance, they’ll be ready.”

Watch a cool video from the Register-Guard and read the article, “See Spot Saved: Eugene Springfield Fire receives gift of 35 pet oxygen masks” here.

If you are concerned that your local fire departments don’t have these oxygen masks which could potentially save your or someone else’s pet, do some digging. The Omaha project benefited the Omaha Fire Department, but it seems logical that Lincoln, Council Bluffs and other departments should follow suit if they haven’t already. It’s not very expensive to equip departments with this gear, so ask around and see how you can help get masks in the hands of all first responders.

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