*She is on a ventilator and in critical condition, but she still keeps her head up. “Carmen,” a nine-year-old boxer, is fighting for her life today after a brave attempt to shield her owner — using her body — from the dangerous black smoke of a house fire, which engulfed their home in Ohio.
Vets at the CARE Center veterinary hospital in Cincinnati said Monday in a written statement that Carmen is “still on very intensive ventilator support,” but her badly damaged lungs seemed to be improving slowly.
Fire fighters responded to the blaze in Goshen Township, they found Benjamin Ledford, Carmen’s owner, unconscious in the basement with the dog; who was laying across his face, seemingly trying to shield him from the heat and toxic fumes.
Carmen was also unconscious.
Rescuers did bring her around, and Ledford was rushed to the hospital but was pronounced dead after arrival, according to CBS affiliate WKRC.
When she first reached the vets, Carmen could barely gasp for breath.
“We are providing her with the fluids to stay hydrated and at this stage it may be a day of two before she is interested in eating. Her body is focusing on other things right now,” said Dr. Marlo Anderson at the CARE Center.
After a touch-and-go weekend, the oxygen tube and intravenous nutrition provided to Carmen seemed to be helping her recover.
CARE Center Vets said Monday that Carmen’s “oxygenation is improving,” and “all of her vitals are stable.”
Meanwhile, a donations page set up to help Carmen and the family who lost their home — and loved one, Ledford — in the blaze, had collected almost $12,500 by early Tuesday morning.