Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

After dog survives home explosion, pet owner donates $1,045 for animal oxygen masks

The oxygen mask on Wrigley, above, is designed for animals. It works better than one used for people, below.

JIM DAMASKE | Times

The oxygen mask on Wrigley, above, is designed for animals. It works better than one used for people, below.

The windows of the Curlew Hills Funeral Home shook when a Dunedin house exploded Feb. 11, taking the staff and Keenan Knopke, president and CEO, by surprise.

When Knopke found out that Jingles, a 40-pound American Eskimo dog, was badly injured in the blast — and was treated and possibly saved by a pet oxygen mask — he wanted to help out.

So he walked into the Suncoast Animal League's office in Palm Harbor and handed the manager a check for enough money to buy 45 animal masks.

The cost: $1,050.

"I think it was incredible,'' said Rick Chaboudy, executive director and co-founder of the league. "He didn't want to make a big deal about it. He handed the check to Denise Eberius, our office manager. She was about to cry. She walked over to me and showed me the check and I got teary-eyed.''

Each set costs $70 and consists of a small, medium and large mask. They can fit a small cat to a very large dog. And unlike human oxygen masks, pet masks can be reused.

Knopke made the donation because he loves animals.

He owns five cats, Ophie, Calypso, Mika, Spaz and Stella; one dog, Maddie, a 4-month-old dachshund; and a 20-year-old parrot named Pretty Bird, who Knopke said "can bark like a dog and meow like a kitty.''

About the pet oxygen masks, Knopke said he has only one request.

"My requirement is that they be used in Upper Pinellas and South Pasco because that's our neighborhood,'' he said.

As for Jingles, he remains in the intensive care unit at Florida Veterinary Specialists in Tampa, where the staff said he is stable and comfortable. The dog underwent surgery Thursday and walked for the first time Friday with the aid of a special sling.

Eileen Schulte can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 445-4153.

After dog survives home explosion, pet owner donates $1,045 for animal oxygen masks 02/20/09 [Last modified: Friday, February 20, 2009 10:08pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. No. 16 USF hangs on at Tulane, off to first 7-0 start

    College

    NEW ORLEANS — After half a season of mismatches, USF found itself in a grudge match Saturday night.

    USF quarterback Quinton Flowers (9) runs for a touchdown against Tulane during the first half of an NCAA college football game in New Orleans, La., Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017. (AP Photo/Derick E. Hingle) LADH103
  2. Lightning buries Penguins (w/video)

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Ryan Callahan spent a lot of time last season rehabilitating his injured hip alongside Steven Stamkos, who was rehabbing a knee after season-ending surgery. During those hours, Callahan noticed two things about Stamkos: his hunger and his excitement to return this season.

    Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Slater Koekkoek (29) advances the puck through the neutral zone during the first period of Saturday???‚??„?s (10/21/17) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins at Amalie Arena in Tampa.
  3. Spain planning to strip Catalonia of its autonomy

    World

    BARCELONA, Spain — The escalating confrontation over Catalonia's independence drive took its most serious turn Saturday as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy of Spain announced he would remove the leadership of the restive region and initiate a process of direct rule by the central government in Madrid.

    Demonstrators in Barcelona protest the decision to take control of Catalonia to derail the independence movement.
  4. Funeral held for soldier at center of political war of words (w/video)

    Nation

    COOPER CITY — Mourners remembered not only a U.S. soldier whose combat death in Africa led to a political fight between President Donald Trump and a Florida congresswoman but his three comrades who died with him.

    The casket of Sgt. La David T. Johnson of Miami Gardens, who was killed in an ambush in Niger. is wheeled out after a viewing at the Christ The Rock Church, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017  in Cooper City, Fla. (Pedro Portal/Miami Herald via AP) FLMIH102
  5. Chemical industry insider now shapes EPA policy

    Nation

    WASHINGTON — For years, the Environmental Protection Agency has struggled to prevent an ingredient once used in stain-resistant carpets and nonstick pans from contaminating drinking water.

    This is the Dow chemical plant near Freeport, Texas. Before the 2016 election, Dow had been in talks with the EPA to phase out the pesticide chlorpyrifos, which is blamed for disabilities in children. Dow is no longer willing to compromise.