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Couple donates pet oxygen masks to Hall County fire stations
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Barry and Ginger Stinson drop by Hall County Fire Services Station 4 have donated pet oxygen mask kits to Hall County Fire Services which are kept in the fire engine. The couple stopped by Hall County Station 4 Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018 and chat with firefighter Brian Mills who puts the kit together for a demonstration. - photo by Scott Rogers

When escaping a house fire, a homeowner’s four-legged best friend can face similar health concerns.

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Barry Stinson unpacks an oxygen mask for a dog Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018 at Hall County Station 4. Barry and wife Ginger have donated pet oxygen mask kits to Hall County Fire Services to help animals suffering from smoke inhalation they often find during house fire calls. - photo by Scott Rogers
“Animals suffer from the same thing that humans do in house fires. It’s usually not the fire that actually gets you. It’s the smoke,” Hall County Fire Services Capt. Zachary Brackett said.

To help pets potentially suffering from smoke inhalation, Barry and Ginger Stinson donated four sets of pet oxygen masks to the county.

The kits have three masks each — from the size of Chihuahua to a Saint Bernard — that can hook up to an oxygen cylinder. The masks are reusable and can fit various animals.

“We wanted to do something that was needed and also important to us,” Barry Stinson said, who owns two cats.

The Stinsons said they were inspired by a couple from Peachtree Corners that donated to the fire stations in Gwinnett County. With each kit retailing at $90, Barry Stinson said he hopes others will join him in supplying the fire department.

“I wanted to do something to get invested in the community rather than expect the county to provide for the people,” he said. “I think the people need to be providing stuff where opportunities are available.”

Brackett said one kit will be at Station No. 4 on McEver Road, and the other three will be spread across the various battalions in the county.

“I think it’s a very affordable investment for folks, if you love your animals like we love ours,” Barry Stinson said. 

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Gainesville couple Barry and Ginger Stinson have donated pet oxygen mask kits to Hall County Fire Services. The kits are able to supply oxygen through masks for small or large pets and are stored on the fire engine. - photo by Scott Rogers