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North Dakota man revives chocolate Labrador retriever with CPR after dog gets tangled on rope

Associated Press — July 29, 2004

FARGO, N.D. July 26, 2004 — When a 3-year-old chocolate Labrador retriever named Maddy got tangled in a 10-foot rope securing a trampoline floating on a lake, owner Matt Tollefson didn't think twice. Tollefson dove in after her.

When he dragged the dog's lifeless body out, Tollefson again didn't hesitate.

Her eyes were open and her tongue hung to the side of her mouth. Tollefson performed CPR.

"She's part of the family," Tollefson said. "If she's going to go, she wasn't going to go like that."

Tollefson alternated compressions on Maddy's chest and blowing air in through her snout.

"Instincts just took over at that point."

Tollefson said he took a first responders course in college but is not sure how he knew to blow air through her nose. He said he may have seen it on TV.

Two minutes into it last Monday, Maddy showed signs of life.

A veterinarian the next day diagnosed Maddy with aspiration pneumonia and a chip fracture in her shoulder from the compressions.

The dog is a little swollen and is taking two steam baths a day to help her recovery. She also is on antibiotics.

"Maybe she doesn't, but it seems like she looks at me differently," Tollefson said. "She's still the same dog. There's just more of a bond now."

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