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PETA Gives Award to Officer Who Saved Choking Dog

West Hartford Police K-9 Officer Tom Lazure was honored for saving Harry, a 10-year-old Shih-Tzu.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), the well known animal rights organization, announced Monday that Officer Tom Lazure will receive the organization's Compassionate Action Award.

"Thanks to Officer Lazure's know-how and compassion, Harry survived his frightening experience, and his family did not prematurely lose their furry friend," said PETA Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch in a news release. "West Hartford is very fortunate to have police officers like Thomas Lazure who stand ready to aid both the city's human and nonhuman residents."

On April 23, Lazure responded to a at a Norwood Rd. home. West Hartford Police called Lazure, who as a K-9 officer is trained in basic canine first aid, because there was no animal control officer available at the time.

Lazure was able to save Harry, a 10-year-old Shih-Tzu, by performing a modified Heimlich maneuver, West Hartford police said. The dog was choking on a piece of rawhide, and by properly pressing on Harry's rib cage Lazure was able to dislodge the rawhide and then remove it from the dog's mouth, restoring breathing.

Police reported last week that Harry was examined by a local veterinarian, is in good health, and is expected to make a full recovery.

According to PETA, Officer Lazure will receive a framed certificate, a letter of recognition, and a box of vegan chocolates.

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