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Springfield Fire Department Receives Pet Resuscitators

Animal Resuscitator

The Springfield Fire Department has received a donation of three new pet resuscitator kits. The kits will be used on cats and dogs found in burning buildings. KSMU’s Justin Lux reports the details.

When a family’s home goes up in flames, saving human lives is the first priority. But saving beloved pets is also part of a firefighter’s job. Many pets frequently experience large amounts of smoke inhalation.

As a way to change that, three new pet resuscitator kits were donated by the Ozarks Kennel Club and Michael J. Opsomer of Gentle Care Animal Hospital in Nixa.

These devices are the same you would see for humans, except they’re shaped to fit the mouth of any dog or cat. Also, all three are different sizes, providing a better concentration of air for the pet, depending on its size.

Just like most human oxygen masks, each kit has a tube that hooks up to an oxygen bottle. As a fail-safe device, the masks contain vents that allow air to escape if the amount being pumped in is too great for the animal. It also allows air to enter the mask if the animal is breathing harder than responders thought.

Battalion Chief Julie Williams says she fully expects the devices to be successful when used.

“Fortunately, we have not had an opportunity to use them. I can only think that it will increase the chances for the animals because what they need, more than anything at that particular moment, is high concentrations of oxygen,” says Williams.

The resuscitator kits will be placed on both the Battalion Chief vehicles and the Squad 1 heavy rescue vehicle. These vehicles respond to every fire call in the city.

For KSMU News, I’m Justin Lux.

Julie Williams, Battalion Chief, of the Fire Department. One of many located here in Springfield Missouri. (Photo by: Brittni Bynum) This is one of the three different sized resuscitators that is provided for the Fire Department in case of an animal emergency. (Photo by: Brittni Bynum) Located at one end of the resuscitator is a round rubber piece. This provides a better suction and stability to the animal to ensure that the right amount of oxygen is provided and/or removed. (Photo by: Brittni Bynum) A side view of how the resuscitator mask looks. (Photo by: Brittni Bynum) Julie Williams demonstrates how the oxygen mask functions as well as informing me how the mask is much more affective than the human mask when using them on animals. (Photo by: Brittni Bynum) Julie explains that the Fire Department has been provided with a few more of these masks and is working hard to distribute the remaining to the other Stations here in Springfield Missouri. (Photo by: Brittni Bynum) Julie demonstrates the easiness and quickness of assembling and taking apart one of the many sized resuscitators. (Photo by: Brittni Bynum) At the back of the Batallion Chiefs vehicle sits the box that contains the three animal resuscitators. (Photo by: Brittni Bynum) Human resuscitator masks are also located in the same spot as the animal oxygen masks. With the knew animal resuscitators not only will humans have a fair chance at survival, the animals will have a great chance too. (Photo by: Brittni Bynum)