Thursday, May 7, 2015

Tulsa house fire is the largest pet rescue in recent history

Repost of Fox 23 Tulsa, OK. Story Posted: 10:46 p.m. Monday, May 4, 2015 HERE
(O2 Fur Life Comment: Fox23 video on the subject after Chicken ad)

Story By Rick Maranon
Quick Facts:

* More than 20 pets were living in the house
* Eight cats and four dogs are still alive
* Tulsa Fire Department has been giving CPR to pets for more than 10 years
* TFD has three different sizes of oxygen masks for the different types of animal snouts

The Tulsa Fire Department tells FOX23 a house fire Friday, near Highway 169 and East 28th Street, was the largest pet rescue in the department's recent history.

The fire is still under investigation, but fire crews said they brought out more than twenty pets that were living in the home with two people.

"It was daunting because of the amount of resuscitations that were going on," District Chief Glenn Brigan said. "Because as each animal is coming out, we're trying to work on them. I would say we had one if not two companies working just on that."

Brigan said half of the firemen responding to the fire were working on putting out the blaze, and the other half were administering CPR and fresh oxygen to the animals being pulled out of the house.

Brigan said in addition to multiple dogs and cats, firemen also rescued many animals living in glass containers.
"We brought out eleven cats, five dogs, five or six spotted frogs, and a couple of aquariums that had mice or gerbils or something like that," he said.

He told FOX23 that when it came to the dogs and cats, even the ones who were in the house the longest and didn't look like they were going to make it, fire crews still attempted CPR on the animals and assumed none were deceased until they proved they could not be revived.

Brigan said TFD has been carrying oxygen masks and CPR equipment for pets for more than 10 years, and it is now standard training for fire crews to know CPR techniques for humans and pets.

"Humans as well as animals we are looking for when we are searching, and if we find an animal, we are going to bring it out," he said.

He went on to tell FOX23 that humans and pets have equal priority when initial and secondary searches are being made in a burning house or apartment.

The trucks chiefs drive to supervise fire scenes has three pet oxygen masks in them varying in size to deal with small to large snouts.

Brigan said TFD got the equipment because the department realizes how important pets are to their owners. Fire crews are required to attempt CPR on a pet if it is pulled from a burning building and not assume that if a pet is unconscious that it must be dead.

"Some people believe that their pets are their children. So it's important to work them as best as we can," he said.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but crews believe it started in the garage and reached very hot temperatures because of household chemical being stored in the garage.

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