Many families have some sort of plan when it comes to fire safety. There are pet alert stickers we can place in windows that warn the fire department there are pets inside in case of a fire, we close bedroom doors to keep a fire from spreading through the house while we are asleep, we have fire extinguishers in rooms like the kitchen or the laundry room just in case, etc. Preparing for a fire is incredibly important, and the fire department does all it can to prepare as well. Unfortunately, sometimes funding doesn’t cover what many would consider essential items. One of these items is a pet oxygen mask. Fur-Ever Friends of NC is committed to changing that and saving lives.
Just as with humans, when animals are rescued from a fire, they often require oxygen to survive the trauma. “An estimated 40,000 pets die in residential fires each year, most from smoke inhalation, and 500,000 are affected overall. The Winston-Salem Fire Department makes an effort to rescue and revive pets from fires that is equal to the effort to save human victims. Pet oxygen masks provided by Fur-Ever Friends help ensure pets have the best chance to survive the effects of smoke inhalation. Support from Fur-Ever Friends helps us make a positive difference in the community,” said Winston-Salem Fire Chief Trey Mayo.
In February, Fur-Ever Friends of NC launched the Pet Oxygen Mask Donation Program to raise $10,000 so that each fire truck in Forsyth County can be equipped with two sets of pet oxygen masks. In 2008, Fur-Ever Friends of NC (FFNC) provided life-saving pet oxygen masks for fire trucks in Forsyth County. Over time, however, the masks need to be replaced.
There are three ways to donate to this worthy cause:
- GoFundMe: Pet Oxygen Mask Donation Program (gofund.me/ddaad9d1)
- Send a check to Fur-Ever Friends of NC
P.O. Box 15742
Winston-Salem, NC 27113
Fur-Ever Friends of NC was established in 2004 to improve the well-being of animals in our community. Since then, the organization has created several programs to provide for the otherwise unmet needs of pets who need our help to be healthy, comfortable and happy:
- Rico Fund – Helps provide emergency veterinary care for those in need.
- Share the Warmth – Provides community outreach, access to warm bedding for outside animals, dog and cat food, and spay-neuter-vaccine vouchers.
- Nikon’s Fund – Contributes to the care of retired K-9 officers for the duration of their lives.
- Cruelty Investigation & Education – Conducts various training initiatives for law enforcement, rewards for assistance with cruelty investigations, and advocacy with state and local government for legal protections for animals.
“In emergency services, we understand that a pet can be considered a part of the family. So oftentimes we work hard to rescue them and provide any aid and care that we can. With these devices placed onto the local fire trucks, we will be able to better assist a pet as the need arises from a fire,” said Forsyth County Fire Marshal Gary Styers.
Fur-Ever Friends of NC Volunteer Kathy Hammons unfortunately knows all too well what can happen when a fire tears through your house with a pet inside. She lost one of her dogs in a house fire. “This loss is the reason we purchased these masks in 2008 to honor Lacy,” said Kathy.
Donations made to Fur-Ever Friends of NC are tax deductible. Fur-Ever Friends of NC is a 501(c) (3) organization registered in the state of NC.