• North Reading emergency responders save choking puppy


    NORTH READING, Mass. - Terrifying moments for the owners of a 9-week-old puppy played out on camera as they brought it into the North Reading Police Department for emergency medical help.

    Megan Vitale had just picked up the St. Bernard named Bodhi the day before, but around noon it began choking.

    They rushed to North Reading PD, where Officer Jorge Hernandez jumped into action.

    “He was just kind of limp basically, and had a lot of foam in his mouth,” Hernandez said. “I put the dog down on the floor and I mean my whole hands pretty much wrapped around him and I just started kind of pumping away at his chest.”

    Several slaps to the puppy’s back followed by chest compressions with help from other officers and Bodhi started breathing again.

    “It wasn’t working at first, and then I finally kind of heard like a puff of air come out,” Hernandez said. 

    Firefighter-paramedics right next door arrive in moments with an oxygen mask specially made for dogs and donated by a local vet.

    Bodhi quickly began responding, as the men cradled him in a blanket.

    “Kind of alert looking around and was like ‘what are you guys all doing here?’ He was pretty happy afterwards,” Hernandez said.

    Bodhi was returned to his grateful owner and brought to the vet after the ordeal that the first responders weren’t expecting.

    “You don’t really get trained for a dog you know in the academy. The only thing I would say going through my mind was ‘oh my God, I hope I’m doing this right,’” Hernandez said.

    Bodhi is still at a local animal hospital being treated for a possible respiratory infection. He apparently swallowed whatever he was choking on during the rescue.


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