WENATCHEE — For more than 15 minutes Friday, Wenatchee firefighter Mike Day gave mouth-to-snout resuscitation to a black Lab named Loki.
It worked. The 5-month-old pup, who had been caught in an apartment fire, started breathing on his own and may make a full recovery.
“He doesn’t have the dexterity to keep himself upright yet and he’s coughing a little bit, but he wags his tail when I talk to him,” said Chris Cummings, Loki’s owner.”He’s got a long road to recovery, I’m sure, but we’re keeping faith.”
At the Wenatchee Fire Department, they’re calling Day the dog whisperer. This is the fourth dog he’s done mouth-to snout breathing on in his 23-year career “and all four have made it back,” Day said.
Day was among the firefighters who were called to a fire about noon Friday in the 1200 block of Ninth Street. It was a fire that Loki started while Cummings was away from the house.
“The owner tossed a bag of dog food on the top of the stove, put the dog in his kennel but didn’t get it latched correctly and the dog got out, climbed up on the stove and inadvertently turned the stove on and it caught the bag of food on fire,” Day explained.
At the fire, crews kicked in the door and swept the small detached building for survivors. Firefighter Al Torres found the unconscious Loki and passed the dog to Day.
“He wasn’t breathing, but he had a pulse,” Day said. He held Loki’s snout closed and put his mouth over the dog’s nose.
“It took a long time, it seemed like forever, but he finally started breathing on his own,” Day said. “I didn’t think he was going to make it, but dogs are tough.”
Although Cummings and his 8-year-old son have to find another place to live, they are happy to still have a dog that Cummings calls “my second child.”
And he’s very grateful to Day.
“I’m overwhelmed,” Cummings said. “This was above the call of duty — so far above and beyond.”