Fire crews rescue dog from City Heights fire

Posted at 12:58 PM, May 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-12 17:54:35-04

Firefighters dousing a blaze that damaged a City Heights apartment Thursday rescued and revived a small dog stricken by smoke inhalation.

Flames began spreading through the second-floor rental unit in the 4000 block of 38th Street shortly before 11:30 a.m., according to the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department.

It took crews about 20 minutes to extinguish the blaze, SDFRD spokesman Lee Swanson said. While doing so, they found the ailing Chihuahua.

"He'd inhaled a fair amount of smoke, and he was down for the count," Swanson said.

The personnel brought the canine outside and administered oxygen to the pint-size pup using a specially designed pet mask they carry for such emergencies. In short order, the dog was awake and alert and "seemed to be doing fine," the spokesman said.

Investigators determined that an electrical malfunction sparked the blaze, which caused an estimated $150,000 worth of damage, Swanson said.

The American Red Cross was called in to help the residents of the damaged apartment -- a woman and her 9-year-old daughter -- arrange for interim housing.