HELENSBURGH fire station has become the latest recipient of a potentially life-saving batch of oxygen masks for pets.

The Smokey Paws therapy kits, launched in 2015, provide 80 per cent more oxygen to animals than standard human oxygen masks.

An estimated 46 per cent of households in the UK have pets, with more than 40,000 house fires each year, and the new equipment has transformed the way in which firefighters tackle blazes and treat animals.

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Ron Ewing, who introduced the concept in Scotland, presented the Burgh crew with the appliances recently which were donated by animal lover Claire Forey.

Paul Devlin, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service’s local senior officer for Argyll and Bute, East Dunbartonshire and West Dunbartonshire, said: “The introduction of this equipment enhances our response and will allow our crews to deliver oxygen therapy to pets that have suffered from smoke inhalation.

“Many people regard their pets as family members, and if we can intervene with the Smokey Paws equipment and help to save a pets life then we will do so.”

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More than 200 fire stations throughout Scotland are now equipped with the Smokey Paws kits.