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Maryland Paramedics Treat Unusual Bite Victim

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RIVERDALE, Md. - Prince George's Co. Firefighter/Medics treated an unusual patient on Friday, July 9.

A person calling 9-1-1 reported a pit bull attack in the 5700 block of 66th Ave.  The victim's leg was bleeding uncontrollably. Animal Control officers and Prince George's Co. Police were dispatched.

Police arrived first and found a 3-year-old Cocker Spaniel named Peluche suffering from bite wounds to his paws.  Animal Control were not close, so the police officer requested assistance from the firefighter/medics.

Fire Lieutenant Beardmore and Fire Fighter/Medics Yarish, Miller and Francis arrived and applied basic first aid measures to control the bleeding and dress the wounds.

Peluche's owner tells Prince George's County Fire the dog needed surgery for his wounds, but he's doing fine.

In a press release, Prince George's County Fire and EMS spokesman Mark Brady says, "Providing first-aid to an injured animal is not common, yet, is another service Prince George's County Firefighters and Paramedics are placed in a position to provide on an as-needed basis. Personnel understand the importance of pets to families and are grateful to assist when and where possible while keeping safety of themselves and others as a priority."

In an ironic twist, one of the first responders, Janice Francis worked for three years as a veterinary technician before becoming a paramedic.

"I used some of my experience and training," she said.

One rescuer said working with Peluche wasn't much different that working on people. "Except that the patient couldn't talk to you at all, working on a dog was a lot like working on people." said Firefighter/Paramedic Bradley Miller.



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