Just East of Tampa, Florida in the town of Lakeland, the crew of Engine 31 responded to a distress call at a local church. However, this call was a bit different than the norm.
Reports received on Friday, May 25th indicated loud meowing coming from the engine of a vehicle.
Firefighters pulled a very vocal young kitten out of the dangerous compartment. The tiny calico was very scared and took quite a bit of enticing before she allowed the crew to save her. But they never thought of giving up!
There was no mother cat found in the area so they contacted the local SPCA of Florida. The two groups have partnered up quite a bit in the past to help make a difference in the community.
But the leader of the crew, Lieutenant Dan Faviere, instantly fell in love with the tiny soul. He couldn’t stop thinking about the fur-babies squeaky cries or adorable little face. Immediately after his shift ended, he and his wife hurried to the SPCA to check on the kitten.
His wife became smitten with the baby girl too, now named Maya. Maya will go through all the routine vet visits and checkups to ensure she has no health issues. As soon as she is given the “all-clear”, Maya will make one more journey with the couple to her fur-ever home.
Only time will tell if Lt. Faviere truly rescued Maya, or if Maya will rescue him. Her tale is heartwarming either way!
The dedicated and caring Lakeland firefighters and the local SPCA joined forces in July of 2015.
In a press release dated 7/27/15, SPCA Florida Executive Director Adam Stanfield stated:
“We are excited to partner with Lakeland Fire Department on this new Wellness Wagon stop, and to offer our full-service medical center as needed for injured or distressed pets they encounter during emergencies.
LFD has equipment on its apparatus, including animal specific oxygen masks and medical rescue kits, to help pets in medical need that may be encountered in fire calls or medical responses for human patients.
“While we always hope those unfortunate circumstances do not arise, we hope to save more lives by providing that healing technology to the four-legged residents LFD serves.”
Since then the partnership has also released an annual calendar with proceeds going to rescued animals in Lakeland. Each month highlights “buff” firemen with animals rescued through the SPCA program. Over $25,000 has been raised to date through calendars to help pay for medical care for animals found at emergencies!
They’ve also created a Pet Safety series on YouTube. These include topics like having a plan in place for an emergency and pet proofing your home. Such an amazing team that does amazing work spreading knowledge.
Thank you to all the firefighters, rescuers and SPCA teams for your service!