Photo Courtesy: Jake's Page
HANAHAN, S.C. (KTVU) - When we called for firefighter William Lindler to ask about his special dog, a city hall official on the other end responded, "Yes, that's Jake's dad!"
Jake is famous around Hanahan, South Carolina and fast becoming known around the globe.
The Pit Bull is the Hanahan Fire Department's official mascot and a few months ago was sworn in as an honorary member of the department--with badge and all.
Last year, firefighter William Lindler rescued Jake from a burning building.
Lindler had just returned home from work when he noticed smoke coming from a neighboring home.
Without a second thought, he raced to get his firefighting gear and ran to the burning building.
As other firefighters arrived, the family who lived on the property yelled out that their Pit Bull puppy was still inside.
Lindler immediately helped pull the four pound puppy from the building. But the little dog was in bad shape.
He was brought to an animal care clinic for treatment and was then abandoned by his caretakers.
Veterinarians said there was a chance that he would not make it. The three week old dog suffering burns over 75% of his body, including his paws.
Jake underwent intensive treatment including weeks of morphine and oral and topical antibiotics.
When firefighter Lindler found out that Jake was recovering without a family by his side, he came to the rescue again.
Lindler and his family decided to adopt Jake and helped nurse him back to health.
Jake eventually began going to work with Lindler, and he not only became a fixture around the fire station, but at city hall as well.
Lindler says he takes Jake over to greet workers at city hall who are always waiting with treats on hand.
The firefighter says, "I can't imagine my life without him."
He describes Jake as "an attention hound" and "rockstar" who loves people.
Lindler jokes the dog probably thinks he is a person too.
While Jake has recovered from his burns, he still has scars and areas of his body where his fur will not grow back, according to Lindler.
The firefighter is considering eventually having Jake trained and certified as a therapy dog to work with young burn victims.
But in the immediate future, Lindler wants to have Jake certified as an arson detection dog.
For now, the dog and his "daddy" are getting ready to celebrate the puppy's first birthday on April 1st and enjoying all of the attention they've received.
The special Pit Bull's inspiring story is spreading around the globe.
Lindler says news outlets from Europe and Asia are doing stories about the dog who beat the odds, survived his injuries, and is winning the hearts of pretty much everyone he meets.