She knew just what to do.Meet Koda — a 5-year-old golden retriever who recently saved the day with one small act.
As Georgetown Fire Department’s community engagement and therapy K9, Koda is used to serving her community. When she’s not helping her dad, Jonathan Gilliam, educate children and adults about fire safety, she’s usually lending a paw as a therapy dog.Most of Koda’s assignments
while she’s on duty are low-stress. But recently, the professional good girl was faced with an emergency — her dad got locked out of the fire department, and she was the only one around to help.“At the time, I thought it was just my keycard that wasn’t working,” Gilliam,
the department’s deputy fire marshal, told The Dodo.Gilliam had stepped outside briefly while cleaning up after an event when the door to the public safety building shut behind him. He tried to use his keycard to unlock the door, but it wouldn’t work.“My initial thought was,
‘How am I going to get back in?’” Gilliam said.He quickly called the 911 dispatch center located inside the building in hopes that someone would come to his aid.As he waited for help, Gilliam peered inside the door. He made eye contact with Koda, then came up with a new approach.
“I thought to myself, ‘I wonder if Koda could open it,’” Gilliam said.Gilliam knocked on the glass door, which excited Koda. As if she’d always done so, the happy pup responded by jumping up onto the door and pressing the bar to unlock it.“That was the first time she’d opened a door
or even attempted,” Gilliam said.You can watch Koda open the locked door here:Once inside, Gilliam realized the building’s keyless entry system was down. If someone from the 911 dispatch team had gone to help him, they would’ve been locked out, too.Koda’s small but mighty jump
effectively saved Gilliam and the rest of the Georgetown Fire Department crew on duty from a night of complete chaos. She had no way of knowing the weight of her actions, but Koda met her dad’s
gratitude with an excited tail wag to celebrate, anyway.Koda’s gone back to low-key assignments since that night, but she continues to receive praise from her fellow firefighters for helping her dad in a time of need.