Nothing can clear a room like a rapidly-spreading fire. The suddenness and urgency associated with a house fire is frightening and dangerous.
Even given how quickly the fire brigade and paramedics can respond, the damage can be irreparable. Losing a home and material possessions can be devastating, but losing a loved one is an altogether different kind of tragedy.
Paramedics and firefighters responded to a house fire in Queensland, Australia in May.
As a fire ripped through a duplex on the northern Gold Coast, most were able to flee to safety. However, two remained trapped inside, unable to wade through the flames.
One was a 7-month-old cattle dog named Holden, and the other was a kitten named Chip—they were home alone when the fire broke out. When firefighters found them in the apartment, they were unable to move, panting heavily, and covered in black soot.
Both animals were suffering from smoke inhalation and needed medical intervention if they were going to survive. They were scooped up and carried out of the building where paramedics quickly tried to bring them back to life.
Fortunately, paramedics Shelley Pringle and Jennifer Chesters were ready for them.
Chesters previously worked as a veterinarian before becoming a paramedic.
Chesters couldn’t have been a better fit to try and revive Holden and Chip. She’d worked professionally saving the lives of beloved pets before plying her trade on people.
“[It] was a long time ago and I thought I’d forgotten almost everything,” she said to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. “You could tell that they were quite affected by the smoke.”
Both animals needed oxygen to be revived. After about an hour, they showed slight signs of improvement and were well enough to be taken to the vet for a more thorough examination.
“It’s just a relief that what we could do helped and they didn’t get any sicker,” Chesters said to ABC.
Both animals made a full recovery and were acting normally within a short time.
Had it not been for the direct intervention by the paramedics, the story might have ended differently. Upon being reunited, the owner of the home devastated by fire was happy to see her cuddly little ones were doing alright.
“So glad that you helped them and [got] oxygen [into] them,” pet owner Anna Fitzpatrick said in a video shot by Gold Coast News. “I broke down in tears. I was just afraid I was going to lose them both.”
The paramedics have received praise for their efforts that saved Holden and Chip’s lives.
“It’s a really hard job sometimes and any happy ending is great,” Chesters said. “Especially for these two little ones.”
Our Paramedics don't often get to reunite with their patients but on this occassion it was the purr fect outcome.We all love our fur babies.
Posted by Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) on Tuesday, May 29, 2018