Owner rescues drowning dog, then performs CPR
Published: July 10, 2007 | 6435th good news item since 2003
Sam loves the water, but on Sunday it almost killed him.
The 6-year-old Labrador retriever nearly drowned in a swimming pool before his owner, Devin Thomas of Frisco, pulled him from the water.
And performed CPR.
“I clamped his mouth shut and blew down his nostrils,” said Mr. Thomas, who admitted he didn’t really know what to do.
But he knew enough to try, and to compress the dog’s chest on the way to the emergency vet clinic in Plano.
Dr. Harold Krug, Sam’s veterinarian, said Mr. Thomas’ actions probably helped save the dog’s life. He added that moving the dog also probably helped.
Dr. Krug pointed out that dogs young and old do drown.
“The pool, that’s the biggest one we see,” he said, cautioning pet owners to monitor their pets in pools and teach young dogs how to get out of them.
“It’s something they just don’t think about,” Dr. Krug said.
Statistics on CPR on animals are not readily available, but there have been several such news accounts recently.
In February, a San Diego girl reportedly revived her Labrador after it was pinned underwater by a patio table; while in Alaska, a musher performed CPR on a sled dog. In March, an Ohio man revived his mastiff after it choked on a toy.
The basics of cardiopulmonary resuscitation are the same in dogs as humans, except that dogs must be placed on their sides and rescue breaths must be given through the nose.
The Dallas area chapter of the American Red Cross offers animal first-aid courses, complete with animal mannequins. Outlying offices also offer the training courses. One is coming up June 9 at Bob Woodruff Park in Plano.
As for Sam, his vet says he’s expected to make a full recovery, but he won’t be swimming for a while.