When I think of an animal in a firehouse, I tend to think of a firehouse dog.
Specifically, I think of a Dalmatian, since that breed was historically used by American fire departments for years.
But one firehouse has a mascot of the feline persuasion.
The little orange and white cat was just a baby when he stumbled into the Belmont Fire House in Greenville, South Carolina. The stray cat was all alone and just a few weeks old, tiny and malnourished.
Belmont’s fire department, which had seen a few stray animals wander in and out over the years, took a special liking to the friendly kitty. They nursed him back to health with a combination of food and attentive love. In the 2 years since he’s become an important member of the team and even lives in the firehouse now!
“I came in one day and I saw the guys playing with this kitten,” Fire Chief Anthony Segars told USA Today. “But a few days later […] the cat was sleeping in the bay. So I asked the guys, ‘Why is the cat here?’ And they told me, ‘He lives here now.”’
In his years at Belmont, the cat (nicknamed “Flame” by his firefighter family) has acted as both a companion pet and a therapy animal for the crew. Flame even became an internet sensation after appearing in a “My Cat From Heaven” segment on the Animal Planet show My Cat From Hell.
Follow more of Flame’s adventures on Instagram.
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