VIDEO: Firefighters save a Wisconsin dog with CPR

National news outlets are heralding Wausau, WI, firefighters for saving a yellow Lab from a burning house — and reviving him using mouth-to-snout CPR.

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Jared Thompson and Jamie Giese carry a revived Koda. (Photo: Wausau Daily Herald/Dan Young)

On Tuesday, Kim Carlson arrived home to find her house in flames. Her fiance’s 17-year-old son, Dwight Borchardt, had already gotten the family’s Border Collie and two cats out, but 7-year-old Koda was still inside.

“I was prepared to douse myself with water to get him,” Carlson told local news station WSAW. “[My fiance] said, ‘You can’t, Kim, you cannot go,’ and I said, ‘I have to get that dog, I love him.’ “

She ran into the house anyway, but the smoke was so thick she had to turn back. After firefighters put out the blaze, they found Koda in a bedroom, unconscious.

“When they laid him down on the ground, we could see that he was struggling quite a bit to breathe,” firefighter Jared Thompson told WSAW. He and fellow firefighter Jamie Giese began administering CPR and giving Koda oxygen.

When the two appeared on the TODAY show on Friday, Giese told Matt Lauer, “I have never been trained in [CPR for pets]. … We could tell he was trying to breathe, and our training for humans is airway, breathing, circulation. We had no tools handy, so it was mouth-to-snout.” They were able to revive Koda, who was rushed to an animal hospital.


Almost a week later, Koda’s doing fine. “It was truly a miracle,” Carlson told WSAW. “I’m forever grateful to Jared and Jamie and the fire department and the police department.” No other family members were injured.

Protect Your Pets
The ASPCA offers a free pet-safety pack with “Animals Inside” window and door stickers to let police and firefighters know there are pets in your house. Getting certified in pet first aid and CPR is a great way to make sure you know what to do if your pet is injured or unconscious. (Find out what I learned about pet first aid and CPR when I got certified.) And every pet parent should have a pet first-aid kit in the home.


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More about this story:

TODAY: Firefighers resuscitate dog injured in fire

Wausau Daily Herald: Family, dogs, cats OK after fire on Wausau’s West side

WSAW: WI firefighters save dog’s life with CPR

MyFoxTwinCities.com: Firefighters save Wis. dog using mouth-to-snout

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