WILLIAMSON - After the members of the Williamson Fire Department adopted a new mascot, a Border-Collie named Pouch, the realization of what a pet means to those who love and care for them became very real. With that in mind, the firefighters and Chief Jerry Mounts decided to implement pet CPR training into their curriculum.
With the valuable training and knowledge of Dr. Linda Knowles, the Williamson Animal Hospital Veterinarian whose office is located on E. 4th Avenue in close proximity to the fire station, plans were put into motion. Dr. Knowles generously offered to purchase the pet CPR equipment for the Williamson firefighters and furthermore, provided the instruction and training needed to assist an injured dog or cat, should the need arise.
“With this training in place, all of our EMT’s and Paramedics are fully trained to provide CPR to an animal that for example, may have suffered from smoke inhalation in a fire,” stated Mounts. “They will also be able to assist with rendering emergency CPR on a dog or cat that is having a heart attack or has been injured in an accident until a veterinarian arrives to take over their care.”
“Recently we had a fire that destroyed a home on East 4th Avenue in which three dogs lost their lives,” said the chief. “The situation may have ended differently for the pets if we would have had this equipment and training. We’re hopeful that we can be successful in the future to prevent a repeat occurrence.”
Pouch, the Border-Collie who now makes his home at the Williamson Fire Department has quickly found his way into the hearts of each of the firefighters, and the way he looks at them and remains loyally by their sides proves that love is a two way street. The firemen commented that the sounds of the sirens and fire trucks has never scared or bothered him, and are hopeful that with a little more obedience training in place, he can become a permanent fixture as a passenger in the fire engines.
“He’s a great dog,” stated Lt. Joey Carey. “He’s the most popular member of our department when kids come for tours. He gets very excited when they come in the building and they all love to pet and play with him.”
Lt. Carey commented that the dog showed up one day and has never left, and acted as though he knew he was home from that very first visit.
“I’ve always heard that the best pets are the ones who choose you, not the other way around, and Pouch is definite proof of that being a true statement,” commented Carey.
“He’s one of us now, and we’re very thankful to have him.”