Belton: Firefighter saves dog just hours after being sworn in

BELTON, Texas (KWTX) A Central Texan will have quite the story to share with his family about the first day he was sworn in to the Belton Fire Department.

Last Thursday started out on a high note for 23-year-old LJ Wissinger.

"To be able to swear-in, I was very proud. I've worked long and hard to finally get on at a fire department," Wissinger said.

But hours later, the celebration would turn into Wissinger called out to his first house fire -- on his first day. When they arrived to the home in the 600 block of S. Penelope, they found a dog inside.

The dog was in need of help.

"When I came back, that's when they had pretty much brought the dog out. I got an animal oxygen mask and connected it to a cylinder and we turned it up and started feeding oxygen to the dog," he said.

With the homeowner outside, the mission became to save the dog's life.

"Tried to work her lungs and get as much oxygen into them so, you know, do their work," Wissinger said.

Thankfully, it worked.

"For me to have my first fire and come out with a save is a nice milestone to have as well," he said.

But, what's a milestone without a post on social media? The Belton Fire Department shared a photo of Wissinger and the dog on Facebook. He also shared the news with his family.

"Everyone was just real proud and happy for me that I was able to do that," Wissinger said.

While he was able to save the dog's life, Wissinger says the day sums up the reason he decided to be a firefighter.

"I like to help people and I like to protect as well. What better way to do it than be a firefighter?" he added.