Matters of the Heart: New CPR Dog for Area 31 EMS Students

September 2023

Her name is Chloe, and her purpose is to help students learn how to rescue man’s best friend.

“Students of all ages are definitely drawn to her, and then find the story behind her to be pretty awesome,” said Melissa Lane, instructor in the Emergency Medical Services Program at the Area 31 Career Center at Ben Davis High School.

Ms. Lane said that several years ago, EMS crews began carrying oxygen masks on ambulances designed specifically for dogs. “If there was a fire, the ambulance and fire crews would use the canine oxygen masks on domestic dogs after they rescued humans first,” she said.

As a result, students in the Area 31 EMS program have had the opportunity to witness attempts to save dogs in emergency situations. The students are required to complete 16 hours of ambulance ride-along time with the Wayne Township Fire Department. A few years ago, Ms. Lane said, one of her students responded with the fire department to a puppy who had fallen through the ice on a pond. When they recovered the puppy, they performed CPR and gave it oxygen. Unfortunately, said Ms. Lane, the puppy didn’t survive.

“During the same school year, there was another student who responded to a house fire with the ambulance and performed CPR on a dog and had a better outcome,” said Ms. Lane. “It was then I knew we needed to have a ‘basic dog’ to help the students train for these situations.”

That “basic dog” was the first canine mannequin purchased for the Area 31 EMS program. It allowed students to practice basic canine rescue skills. Ms. Lane soon came to realize a more sophisticated mannequin could allow students to be trained to treat and transport canine officers injured in the line of duty.

So earlier this year, Ms. Lane purchased a special canine mannequin – now named Chloe – that is helping students learn even better how to respond to dogs who need CPR or other emergency medical treatment. The mannequin was purchased with help from the Wayne Township Education Foundation.

WTEF funded the mannequin with the Tyler Humphrey Memorial Fund. Tyler, who attended Carmel High School, was a business major at IUPUI when he passed away in 2019. His mother, Geralyn, said Tyler dreamed of becoming an EMT and firefighter. “He wanted to help people in a big way,” she said. “The scholarship fund is our small way of keeping Tyler’s dreams and memory alive.”

That the scholarship has funded the Area 31 EMS Program’s new CPR dog is not a coincidence. Tyler loved animals, his mother said, especially his dog, Chloe.

“It feels so good to be able to help others and the animals in Tyler’s name,” she said. “I know the CPR dog was a gift to the EMS program, but it was a special gift to us when we saw the collar with Tyler’s and Chloe’s names on it.”

Students are able to use Chloe to learn a variety of skills needed to treat dogs who are in emergency situations. Those skills include opening and maintaining an airway, CPR, administering oxygen, and immobilizing fractures.

“The training is definitely something that can be transferred to our everyday lives and can be helpful for our own pets,” said Ms. Lane. “I was so thankful for this gift from the Wayne Township Education Foundation and the Tyler Humphrey Memorial Fund. The students love the story of Chloe and appreciate what she represents to us.”

The Tyler Humphrey Memorial Scholarship funds EMT scholarships and “random acts of kindness” in the name of Tyler Humphrey, who passed away in 2019. Tyler’s dream was to become an EMT and firefighter. One of the scholarship’s chief fundraisers is an annual fall party that includes dinner, live music, a silent auction, wine pull, and other activities. This year’s fall party takes place October 7 at 5:30 p.m. You may contact Geralyn Humphrey for more information at 317-490-5504 or

The Wayne Township Education Foundation (WTEF) provides community leadership to enrich, engage, and stimulate teaching and learning in the Metropolitan School District of Wayne Township. WTEF accomplishes this by supporting school programs and resources, while recognizing excellence among students and staff. To learn more about WTEF, call 317-988-7966, visit, or follow us on Facebook or Twitter @WayneTwpEdFound.