Masking life

By Connie Orcutt • Published: September 1st, 2014
Category: Animal Airwaves

It’s a heartbreaking fact that many pets die in house fires each year. Estimates range from 40 thousand to 150 thousand deaths annually in the United States alone.

People know to run outside when a fire erupts but a pet’s instinct is to hide. So not surprisingly, most fire-related pet deaths are caused by smoke inhalation. Firefighters are heroic, whether the lives to be saved are human or animal. But not even they can revive a pet without proper tools, and that means oxygen masks sized for animals.

A number of organizations are raising funds to supply these masks to fire departments in the United States. Masks are available in 3 sizes so that animals from birds and guinea pigs to rabbits and dogs can be saved. Thousands of oxygen masks have been provided to rescue teams so far, but there’s still a long way to go.