Firefighter Rescues Dogs, Performs CPR

Fire destroyed second, third floors of two Bucktown buildings, officials say


When firefighter Tammy Rodriguez was greeted by the rambunctious, brown and white pitbull in the Engine 57 station house Friday night, she couldn't believe her eyes.

"Oh my gosh, are you kidding me?" she said.

Just hours earlier, Rodriguez went to work on the lifeless dog as her colleagues finished putting out the fire in the 1800 block of North Honoree Street.

Firefighter Terry Reilley said the fire "pretty much destroyed" the second and third floors of two buildings.  

"And I would imagine water damage probably ruined the first floor of each," he said.

During her efforts, Rodriguez went through two tanks of oxygen, fed through a mask fitted for animals, and performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation on the animal.

"For a while, there, it wasn't reacting, but I think just the positive pressure of oxygen made it start breathing, which was exciting.  And then we just kept working her and all of a sudden she just opened her eyes... and then she got up," recalled Rodriguez.

The dog, clearly grateful for the rescue, wagged its tail and licked at Rodriguez's face.

It was the culmination of a bittersweet day for Jorden Grennan, the dog's owner.  She was at work when the fire broke out.  And while she's now looking for a place to live, she hugged Rodriguez for saving her dog.

"I have three dogs myself, and I would expect that if that had happened to my home that they would do the same for my puppies," said Rodriguez.  "I mean, they're part of our family and when I saw that, I was like, 'Oh my God, I can't just let this dog die."

A second dog, a boston terrier/bulldog mix, remains in an animal hospital in critical condition.

A cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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