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Monday, April 7, 2014

Out of the Ashes of a Bowie House Fire - PGFD & SPCA Sparky Fire Fund

Mark E. Brady, PGFD Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930
mebrady@co.pg.md.us     Twitter @PGFDPIO

In October of 2013 firefighters rescued two dogs, Mylo and Otis, from the burnt out remains of a Bowie home.  The dogs were lifeless but were successfully resuscitated by firefighters using donated Pet Oxygen Masks.  Just a few short days later, sadly, one dog died, however, the other survived.  The chain-of-events that led up to the passing of this family pet motivated members of the Fire/EMS Department to do something in hopes of preventing this personal tragedy from ever occurring again.

After the dogs were revived firefighters turned the dogs over to their owners with the advice of seeking veterinary care immediately.  The family did not have adequate financial resources to obtain the needed vet care and days lingered as the pets conditions deteriorated.  Fire Investigators were working with the family on a cause of the fire and witnessed what was occurring.  

The Investigators contacted the Department's Public Information Office and a joint effort was undertaken to find a vet that could provide care to the dogs that were suffering from small burns and smoke inhalation.  By the time appropriate care was located it was too late for one of the dogs that died at the vets office.  The other dog has survived.  If vet care had been initiated earlier there is the real possibility that both family pets would have survived.

The Prince George's County Fire/EMS Department and the SPCA of Anne Arundel County worked together and with support from the Prince George's County Animal Management Division to create the "PGFD and SPCA Sparky Fire Fund."  This fund will allow a family pet in similar circumstances to the Bowie incident to be taken to select 24-hour veterinarians and receive immediate care.  Payment would made through this fund which will be managed by the SPCA.

Now, while battling a fire and a pet is found to be suffering from injury or smoke inhalation and the family does not have the financial means or is not available to care for the pet themselves, authorization will be given to have the pet taken to one of the selected 24-hour vets to have treatment initiated.  The "PGFD SPCA Sparky Fire Fund" will ensure care is initiated and payment guaranteed to the vet.

We need your support.  Our goal is to meet the expenses of pet owners who find themselves in situations similar to that of Mylo’s and Otis’ owner.  Your generous donations will provide immediate veterinary care for pets affected by house fires in Prince George’s County.      

Donations may be made on-line by clicking here.  Please be sure to indicate that your donation is for the PGFD SPCA Sparky Fire Fund.   

Donations may also be sent by mail and should be sent to:   

SPCA of Anne Arundel County
PGFD & SPCA Sparky Fire Fund   
1815 Bay Ridge Avenue
Annapolis, MD 21403

The following images were captured on the day Mylo and Otis were rescued and revived by firefighters.  Images are courtesy of Mark E. Brady, PGFD PIO.

This is the dog that did not survive.