On October 1st every year, we honor the brave canines that help fight fires and are the heart of American fire departments. For years, dogs have lived, slept, and worked alongside firefighters in local fire departments across the country. There is a long history of our furry friends helping fight fires and saving so many lives. These canines work fires and the aftermath, participating in search-and-rescue missions.
In the 1800s, carriage dogs became fire pups. When fire departments began utilizing horse-drawn fire carriages, Dalmations remained alongside these carriages since they have a proven record of calming horses down. In the 2000s, fire pups started to be the face of fire departments. Dalmatians and other fire pups served as companions and guarded the firehouse and assisted with community outreach.
Dalmatians are not the only breed of dogs we see fighting fires; we have seen common search dog breeds including Golden Retrievers and Labradors join the fight. Herding breeds like German Shepherds and Border Collies are also proven to be athletic and brave, bringing valuable skills to the force. According to the Search Dog Foundation, the best rescue dogs have a bold, energetic personality, and a “don’t give up on the task” mentality.
These days, fire pups are often used to educate the public about fire safety. In 1986, the National Fire Safety Council (NFSC) developed Firepup, a friendly Dalmatian cartoon character, to help teach about fire and burn prevention and make safety issues fun, entertaining, and non-threatening. Firepup is a positive and uplifting role model for young children. Firefighters use Firepup in fire safety presentations to children in thousands of schools. Firepup appears in fire and burn prevention education programs and materials used by fire prevention officers and teachers.
Fire safety is a top priority at Rocky Top Restoration, and we believe it is so important to honor our firefighters and their furry friends that save lives every day. You can observe National Fire Pup day by donating to the cause, adopting a fire-rescued dog, or even becoming a volunteer firefighter. We will do our part by restoring homes damaged by fire disasters and always lending a hand to those in need!