Thanks to some seriously compassionate firefighters, one lucky fish lives to swim another day.
Last week, the Bangor (Maine) Fire Department was fighting a blaze at a young boy’s home when he realized his pet fish was still inside, reports PETA in a press release. The heroes then rushed back in to retrieve the soot-covered tank.
“Fish feel pain, just as dogs, cats, and humans do—and thanks to these firefighters, this fish escaped the burning home unharmed,” says PETA Senior Director Colleen O’Brien in a press release. “PETA hopes their kindness and determination will inspire others to come to the aid of animals in need, whether they have fur or fins.”
Fish are more intelligent than most people presume, and studies have shown that they’re able to recognize individuals, use tools, and even maintain complex social relationships. “They also communicate with one another through a range of low-frequency sounds and grieve when family members and companions die,” says PETA.
PETA will be awarding the Bangor Fire Department with a framed certificate, a box of vegan cookies, and a copy of Rip Esselstyn’s The Engine 2 Diet—made famous when Esselstyn transformed the health of his entire Texas firehouse with a plant-based diet.