Fire Departments Receive Masks to Save Pet’s Life

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BARBERTON, Ohio-- Each year, thousands of pets die in house fires due to smoke inhalation.

Some area fire and police departments in Northeast Ohio received specially-made oxygen masks which could help save your pet's life during a fire.

"It can be quite devastating to a family to lose a pet in a fire," said Chief Kim Baldwin of the Barberton Fire Department.

Chief Baldwin has seen it all in his 24-year career of fighting fires. He's battled to save pets who have been in a fire and were suffering from smoke inhalation.

Thanks to "Project Breathe," his firehouse received five pet oxygen mask kits. Baldwin said says his firefighters are now equipped to save a pet's life.

"It's always our hope that we'll never have to use them, but in the event that we do, we have a new tool now that we can use for taking care of people's pets," said Chief Baldwin.

First responders from 15 area fire and police departments received a total of 54 pet oxygen mask kits.

"This will make it much easier; it actually fits on the dog's snout. It makes giving them oxygen much easier," said Chief Brent Frey of the Clinton Fire Department.

Barberton High School nursing students provided training for the departments receiving the kits through "Project Breathe" which was sponsored by "Invisible Fence."

"We're training to become nurses, but we think it's important for everybody to receive care, not just people; so we thought that it would be good to spread the knowledge of CPR for dogs," said Marissa Hier, a nursing student.

"Invisible Fence" started "Project Breathe" back in 2006 and since then the masks have helped to save more than 80 pets across the country.

"Locally and statewide are not really funded for these so it makes a lot of sense for us to raise donations and friends at corporate to help out with this project," said Rob Myers, owner of "Invisible Fence" of Canton.

"Invisible Fence" has donated more than 10,000 pet oxygen mask kits to first responders all over the United States.

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