Fire and smoke can be just as dangerous to pets as people. Our four legged friends may not always find it easy to escape the flames.
Thanks to a donation, Vernon’s fire department is now better equipped to help domesticated animals suffering from smoke inhalation.
A Vernon couple has donated three sets of specialized pet oxygen masks to the fire department. The kits include masks in a range of different sizes to help different types of animals.
“Hopefully we can save some lives,” said John Deak, who along with his wife, donated the masks.
It’s not uncommon for pets to be involved in fires. In the past when animals have breathed in smoke, Vernon firefighters have improvised by using human masks.
“It has been effective at times but these are going to be much more effective,” said Brent Bond, a captain with Vernon Fire – Rescue Services.
The better fitting masks will mean oxygen can be delivered more efficiently to pets in distress.
“The critical thing is just getting them a lot of oxygen. As soon as they inhale smoke, the damage is already done to the lungs so getting that oxygen to them in an efficient way is critical,” said veterinarian Dr. Jessica Barker.
Barker was on hand to give firefighters a demonstration of how to use the masks to help pets.