Rocky, a 10-year-old pit bull terrier mix, was rescued by firefighters Wednesday afternoon when his ownerâ??s house caught fire. / Indianapolis Fire Department
INDIANAPOLIS - An Indianapolis family was fortunate that they weren't in their house when a fire broke out this week in a bedroom. But their 10-year-old dog, Rocky, wasn't so lucky.
Firefighters responded to the fire Wednesday afternoon and found Rocky under some debris in the bedroom. The pit-bull terrier mix was having trouble breathing.
Firefighter Mike Barrett brought the dog out of the house and handed him over to paramedic Matt Heithoff. He tried to insert a tube into Rocky's mouth to clear his airway, but the dog's gag reflex kicked in. Rocky coughed up some of the fluid in his lungs and started breathing again.
"It was a good sign that (Rocky) was breathing and trying to breathe, so I figured the medics might have a chance," Barrett said. "We happened to get lucky."
Rocky was given oxygen through a mask before he was taken to the Indianapolis Veterinary Emergency Center.
Firefighters contained the fire in 10 minutes.
Investigators ruled the fire accidental. The fire caused an estimated $40,000 in damage, Battalion Chief Mark Culver said in a statement.
Family members, who could not be reached Thursday by The Star, are staying with friends.
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