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Boston Firefighters Get Oxygen Masks for Pets

Boston animals have a better chance of surviving a fire now that the Boston Fire Department has 60 pet oxygen masks in its arsenal. Traditional...

Maria Goodavage  |  Oct 2nd 2010


Oxygen masks designed for pets can help save lives after smoke inhalation (Photo: NYDaily.com)

Boston animals have a better chance of surviving a fire now that the Boston Fire Department has 60 pet oxygen masks in its arsenal. Traditional oxygen masks for people are usually too big or ill-fitting to be effective for pets. Firefighters often end up doing mouth-to-nose resuscitation, which can help, but isn’t ideal. Thanks to a donation by WellPet pet food company and the Massachusetts Veterinary Medical Association, dogs and cats (and even ferrets and bunnies!) who have inhaled smoke during a fire now have the gold standard in rescue treatment to help lungs recover.

dogmask-2“Smoke doesn’t discriminate,” Fire Department spokesman Steve MacDonald said in a Reuters story.

Boston isn’t the first fire department to get oxygen masks. Masks are becoming more common, often being donated by animal groups and businesses, because firefighting budgets are up in smoke themselves these days.

Does your fire department have what it needs to save your pets?