updated 5/9/2005 7:18:03 AM ET 2005-05-09T11:18:03

Man’s best friend has a new friend in Fairfield — the fire department.

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Firefighters have 15 new oxygen masks for dogs and cats that can be used to treat animals overcome by smoke inhalation during a fire.

“A pet’s part of the family. I know, I have a dog and it’s part of the family,” Fire Chief Richard Felner said. “We’re here to take care of families and their pets. That’s what we do.”

The Best Friends Pet Resort chain donated the masks. The company has given about 450 sets of masks so far to fire departments in 11 states.

The masks come in three sizes, one for cats, one for small dogs and one for big dogs.

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