1. Headline
  1. Headline

Video: Firefighters resuscitate dog injured in fire

  1. Transcript of: Firefighters resuscitate dog injured in fire

    MATT LAUER, co-host: We're back at 7:49 with the life-saving work of a group of firefighters in Wisconsin . They rescued a dog from a burning home and revived Koda , a seven-year-old yellow Lab , using mouth-to-snout resuscitation.

    SAVANNAH GUTHRIE, co-host: And those firefighters, Jamie Giese and Jared Thompson , are with us exclusively along with Koda the dog and his owners, Kim Carlson and Todd Borchardt . Good morning to all of you.

    Group: Good morning.

    LAUER: Kim and Todd , I understand that you're returning home, you find out the house is on fire. Your son comes out saying, 'My bedroom's on fire.' You're son is also already trying to save some animals. I think he'd gotten three out of the house, but Koda was nowhere to be found. Is that true?

    Ms. KIM CARLSON: That's correct.

    LAUER: And so how do you find -- and did you know that Koda was still inside?

    Ms. CARLSON: After Dwight had said that Koda was nowhere to be found, when we left earlier that day, about two hours earlier, I knew that Koda was laying upstairs on our bed when we had left. So my first reaction was to go upstairs and check upstairs, but it was just entirely too smoky. It was so black that you couldn't see anything in front of you. So my first reaction was, is that I wanted to cover myself in water...

    GUTHRIE: Yeah.

    Ms. CARLSON: ...and cover my face and mouth and go up and get him myself, knowing that...

    GUTHRIE: And then...

    Ms. CARLSON: ...you know, that's not the right thing to do.

    GUTHRIE: Of course. And so, Jamie , pick up the story from there. You arrive on the scene with your fellow firefighters. What happened next?

    Mr. JAMIE GIESE: Well, our fantastic Engine Company 2, they were the first in unit, and our dispatch information was that there was a dog trapped. Those three guys, Hyden Prausa , Chad Eberle and Tom Gipp , went upstairs, they extinguished the fire, and they did do a search of the entire upstairs and found Koda at the very last room they searched...

    LAUER: And...

    Mr. GIESE: ...which happened to be the room that was actually on fire.

    LAUER: Koda had inhaled a lot of smoke. Are you ever trained for anything like CPR or mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on an animal like a dog?

    Mr. GIESE: I have never been trained in that. I've seen it on TV and, you know, pictures in newspapers and things like that. And when Hyden and Gipp brought the dog down we thought he was dead...

    GUTHRIE: So Jamie ...

    Mr. GIESE: ...just -- but he had him upside down and -- yeah.

    GUTHRIE: Yeah, I was going to say, Jamie 's the one who actually did it. How did you even know what to do?

    Mr. GIESE: Well, they handed the dog off to Jared and I, and we could tell he was trying to breathe. And our training for humans is airway, breathing, circulation, and I told Jared , 'We got to work this dog.'

    LAUER: Right.

    Mr. GIESE: And laid him down in the front yard and we started assisting breathing.

    LAUER: And...

    Mr. GIESE: and we had no tools handy, so it was mouth-to-snout.

    GUTHRIE: Wow.

    LAUER: Well, I'll tell you, obviously Koda is doing pretty well this morning. You guys did a great job saving her life. And I know that dogs are such a big part of people's families, and that's welcome relief to you guys all. Thank you so much for joining us.

By
TODAY contributor
updated 10/21/2011 9:27:42 AM ET 2011-10-21T13:27:42

When his fellow firefighters carried an unconscious Labrador retriever out of a burning house on Tuesday, Jamie Giese had no medical equipment to revive him. So he went with something he had only seen on TV.

  1. Stories from
    1. It's a Girl for Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis
    2. Elisabeth Röhm's Blog: Gone Baby Gone
    3. See the Stunning Photos From the Little People, Big World Wedding
    4. Pennsylvania Parents Charged with Homicide in Starvation Death of 9-Year-Old Son
    5. Shailene Woodley Dyes Her Pixie Bright Blonde! (PHOTO)

The Wasau, Wis., firefighter leaned in for a close encounter of the canine kind, providing mouth-to-snout respiration to help the struggling yellow Labrador breathe, after it had inhaled a substantial amount of smoke. Kim Carlson watched as her dog was saved by Giese’s unorthodox heroics.

Video: Firefighters resuscitate dog injured in fire (on this page)

“I have never been trained in that,’’ Giese told TODAY’s Matt Lauer Friday. “I’ve seen it on TV and pictures in the newspapers and things like that. We thought (the dog) was dead. We could tell he was trying to breathe, and our training for humans is airway, breathing, circulation. We had no tools handy, so it was mouth-to-snout.’’

Slideshow: Firefighter revives dog using mouth-to-snout resuscitation (on this page)

After Giese’s successful revival, firefighters placed a human oxygen mask over Koda's snout. He was rushed to the VCA Companion Care Animal Hospital in Wasau and then the Central Wisconsin Animal Emergency Center, where he received fluids and advanced medical treatments. On Wednesday morning, Koda returned to his owners, who are currently staying with family and friends while the damage to their home is assessed.

Story: Dog who saved owner on 9/11 named American Hero Dog

The 7-year-old Labrador was breathing just fine when he appeared on TODAY Friday. Koda is one of four pets that escaped the fire; Carlson's fiance's 17-year-old son, Dwight Borchardt, helped Cooper the border collie and a pair of cats, Lavender and Mocha, make it out of the burning house.

The fire is believed to have been caused by a malfunctioning box fan, according to the Wasau fire inspector. Dwight Borchardt was the only one home when the fire started spreading around 4 p.m. Tuesday; the blaze causing an estimated $25,000 to $30,000 in damage to the home and another $25,000 in lost belongings. Most of the second floor was ravaged by fire, while the first floor suffered heavy water and smoke damage.

Dan Young  /  Wausau Daily Herald
Firefighter Jamie Giese peforms snout-to-mouth resuscitation on Koda the dog.
Story: Good dog! Three incredible canines compete for glory

Koda was found under a rocking chair in a room on the second floor as the blaze began to get out of control. When Carlson, who shares the home with her fiance Todd Borchardt, arrived on the scene and found out the dog was still inside, she almost ran towards the fire.

“My first reaction was to go upstairs and check upstairs, but it was just entirely too smoky,’’ Carlson said. “It was so black that you couldn’t see anything in front of you. My first reaction was that I wanted to cover myself in water and cover my face and mouth and go up and get him myself, knowing that’s not the right thing to do.’’

Story: Deformed puppy, rescued from trash, learns to walk

After the dispatcher told firefighters that a dog was trapped upstairs, the men searched the entire second floor.

“They found Koda in the very last room they searched, which happened to be the room that was actually on fire,’’ Giese said.

The dog was rushed out of the house and carried to the front lawn, where Giese and Thompson improvised. “I told Jared that we’ve got to work this dog,’’ said Giese, who owns two dogs himself. “(We) laid him down in the front yard, and we started assisting breathing.’’

Story: The cat came back: 13 true ‘tails’ of survival

The family had only owned Koda for four days before they almost lost him. They fell in love with him, they said, the instant they saw him in a newspaper advertisement. Thanks to the quick thinking of Giese and his fellow firefighters, he remains part of the family.

© 2013 NBCNews.com  Reprints

Photos: Firefighter revives dog using mouth-to-snout resuscitation

loading photos...
  1. Smoke is seen coming from the second story bedroom window of a house in downtown Wausau, Wisconsin. Firefighters were called to the scene of the fire where a 7-year-old yellow Lab named Koda was unconscious inside. (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. A firefighter climbs up a ladder to a room filled with smoke. Firefighter Jamie Giese told TODAY they “found Koda in the very last room they searched, which happened to be the room that was actually on fire.’’ (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Wausau firefighters found Koda inside a second-floor room full of smoke and brought the dog outside. Kim Carlson, Koda's owner, said when she discovered that her dog was in the house, “my first reaction was to go upstairs and check upstairs, but it was just entirely too smoky. It was so black that you couldn’t see anything in front of you. My first reaction was that I wanted to cover myself in water and cover my face and mouth and go up and get him myself, knowing that’s not the right thing to do.’’ (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Firefighters gather around Koda in an effort to save him. Firefighter Jamie Giese said, “we thought he was dead. We could tell he was trying to breathe, and our training for humans is airway, breathing, circulation.’’ (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Firefighter Jamie Giese gives mouth-to-snout resuscitation to Koda. He said on TODAY, “I have never been trained in that. I’ve seen it on TV and pictures in the newspapers and things like that.” They had no tools handy, so they acted fast and improvised. (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Kim looks up, in desperation, to the two firefighters tyring to save her dog Koda's life. (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Kim looks at Koda as two firefighters continue their efforts to save his life. (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Koda, conscious again and able to breathe thanks to a heroic and quick rescue, is carried to the car by firefighters to be transported to an animal hospital. (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Koda, inside the firefighters' car, is given oxygen through a human mask. (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Kim gives Koda a relieved kiss as he's ready to be transported to the hospital. (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Thrilled owner Kim holds Koda close after the ordeal. (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Kim Carlson said Koda was released from the Mosinee animal hospital and is "very stressed," but doing well. (Dan Young / Wausau Daily Herald) Back to slideshow navigation
  1. Editor's note:
    This image contains graphic content that some viewers may find disturbing.

    Click to view the image, or use the buttons above to navigate away.

  2. Editor's note:
    This image contains graphic content that some viewers may find disturbing.

    Click to view the image, or use the buttons above to navigate away.

  3. Editor's note:
    This image contains graphic content that some viewers may find disturbing.

    Click to view the image, or use the buttons above to navigate away.

  4. Editor's note:
    This image contains graphic content that some viewers may find disturbing.

    Click to view the image, or use the buttons above to navigate away.

Discuss:

Discussion comments

,

More on TODAY.com

  1. Joan Lunden: 10 things I wish I knew before I was diagnosed with breast cancer

    From the moment you hear the words ‘You have breast cancer,’ it’s almost like you’re shot out of a cannon. Here are 10 things I wish I knew before I was diagnosed.

    10/1/2014 10:52:45 AM +00:00 2014-10-01T10:52:45
  2. Want to help? A guide to breast cancer charities

    In the United States an estimated 296,000 women and 2,240 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year and almost 40,000 women and 410 men will die of the disease. That's one death every 14 minutes, according to the National Breast Cancer Coalition.

    10/1/2014 10:45:11 AM +00:00 2014-10-01T10:45:11
  3. Samantha Okazaki / TODAY
  1. Nbc News

    9 things we learned from Brian Williams' Facebook chat

    10/2/2014 1:41:28 AM +00:00 2014-10-02T01:41:28
  1. Noel Vasquez / Getty Images Contributor

    Mila Kunis,  Ashton Kutcher welcome baby girl

    10/2/2014 1:24:09 AM +00:00 2014-10-02T01:24:09
  1. Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

    Secret Service director resigns amid scandal

    10/1/2014 7:30:52 PM +00:00 2014-10-01T19:30:52
  1. Texas Ebola patient had contact with kids

    Texas Gov. Rick Perry said in a press conference on Wednesday that “some school-age children” had been identified as having contact with the man diagnosed with the first case of Ebola in the United States. 

    10/1/2014 5:37:52 PM +00:00 2014-10-01T17:37:52