Valdosta fire fighters rescue dog from blaze - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Valdosta fire fighters rescue dog from blaze

January 8, 2007

Valdosta - At two years old, Dash is considered the baby of the Culpepper family.  "You just get attached to them and enjoy watching them grow and their little personalities develop just like your own children," says Roger Culpepper.

But this family's Valdosta home was destroyed when their Christmas tree caught on fire.  "By the time we could get water on it, we were trying to get hoses and everything, it was out of control," he adds.

Without the quick work of some Valdosta Fire Fighters, Dash might not have seen the new year.  "On my way to the house to find out what my assignment was, I saw some children crying in the front yard. And they were crying because their dog was still stuck inside the house," says firefighter Scott Williams.

"Most pets, if they can't get out of a house, first thing they do is hide so we looked under the furniture, bed, closets...anywhere a dog could hide," adds Sgt. Jeff Thibodeau, a firefighter with the Valdosta Fire Department.

And they did find Dash hiding in a closet, but the dog was not breathing.  "Myself and Sgt. Thibodeau brought the dog out back and started CPR on the dog and administered oxygen," Williams says.

Their efforts paid off. Dash soon started breathing and has since made a full recovery.  "They were willing to give him mouth to mouth. That's just incredible that they were willing to go to that extent to save his little life," says Wendy Culpepper.

"We do whatever it takes. We understand the pets are part of the family and they are a love one too, and when we go inside searching, we do it just like it was a human being," Sgt. Thibodeau adds.

The men and women at the Valdosta Fire Department says its just part of the job.  But these fire fighters will always be heroes in the eyes of the Culpeppers.

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