Austin Fire Department Nabs PETA Award for Rescuing Five Animals in Five Days

'Superhero' Firefighter Helped Save a Cat, a Dog, a Snake, and Two Kittens in Weeklong Animal-Rescue Extravaganza

For Immediate Release:
May 11, 2017

Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382, Michelle Tanzola 512-974-0151

Austin, Texas – Compassionate Fire Department awards are on their way from PETA to the Austin Fire Department and “superhero” firefighter Alex Baumeister for pulling off five animal rescues between May 1 and 5. In separate incidents, he saved a cat, a 6-foot snake, and a dog from burning houses (successfully resuscitating the dog with an animal oxygen mask), and freed two kittens who had gotten wedged inside a wall.

“This superhero firefighter had the knowledge, resources, heart, and determination needed to rescue five animals in one week from perilous situations,” says PETA Vice President of Communications Colleen O’Brien. “PETA hopes the good work of Alex Baumeister and everyone at the Austin Fire Department will inspire people to come to the aid of animals in need.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—encourages all animal guardians to watch its fire-safety public service announcement (available here) and to put a sign on their doors or windows in order to alert rescue workers to the presence of dogs, cats, and other animal companions. Families can order stickers from the PETA Catalog or make their own.

The fire department and Baumeister will receive a package of the fire-alert stickers to distribute to the public, framed certificates, and a box of delicious vegan cookies.

For more information, please visit

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind