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Washington state fire crew rescues baby hamsters; photo goes viral

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Photo of a Washington state firefighter using a breathing tube on a baby hamster goes viral.

A Washington state firefighter treating a baby hamster with a tiny oxygen mask is the latest social media image to capture the attention of people around the world.

The department has been getting calls for interviews from different countries after a picture went viral of the crew member using a breathing tube on a tiny hamster.

The house fire and subsequent rescue happened about 3 p.m. Friday in Lacey, Wash., said Ryan Fox, a spokesman for the Lacey Fire Department.

“We try to offer good customer service,” Fox said. “We have never done anything like that with hamsters, but we had to try.”

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After consulting with their “Pet Emergency Pocket Guide,” the crew was able to use tiny tubes to get oxygen to the two adult and three baby hamsters, Fox said.

Images of their efforts flooded social media Monday.

“We have been getting calls from all around the world to use the photos and to find out what happened,” Fox said.

Thanks to the efforts of the crew, four hamsters survived. One baby died, Fox said.

“We just want to help in any way we can,” he said.

The family was able to get out of the burning home safely, Fox said.

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