Monday, November 20, 2017

Meet Maddie, an Adoptable Epi All Star!




Meet beautiful Maddie! Maddie currently lives at Husky House Siberian Husky & Fellow K-9 Rescue in New Jersey. She is a sweet eight-year-old Husky/mix who was diagnosed with idiopathic Canine Epilepsy when she was four. In true Epi-dog form, Maddie does not let seizures keep her from enjoying the things she loves, such as food, tennis balls, and snuggling! 

As I've always said, dogs with Canine Epilepsy, with a little extra care and lots of love, can live full happy lives! And just look at that happy, smiling face of Maddie's! She is just waiting for her forever family to come and get her!

Husky House does stipulate, "Maddie needs a home that can dedicate the time and energy to figuring out her epilepsy. Maddie currently experiences cluster seizures requiring hospitalization at times despite the use of at-home rescue meds. She will need a calm, patient, loving family who can understand and help he with her medical issues."

Could that family be yours? If so, contact Husky House at www.HuskyHouse.org and fill out an adoption application for Maddie!  Be sure to tell them you saw her on our FiveSibes blog!

 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

EPIc Dog Tales Wins NYC Big Book Award!


WoooooHooooooo! Words cannot express how proud I am to have been notified that my book, my labor of love, EPIc Dog Tales: Heartfelt Stories About Amazing Dogs Living & Loving Life With Canine Epilepsy has just won the 2017 NYC Big Book Award in the Pet Category! *SO PROUD* And...during November's Epilepsy Awareness Month, how appropos! #LiveGibStrong! đź’ś Many thanks to my inspiration, my beloved Gibson, and to my amazing ArcticHouse Publishing family! What an honor for us and for Epi-dogs everywhere!

A little self-promotion here...my book (a great holiday gift, hint-hint) can be purchased at www.ArcticHousePublishing.com and on Amazon! A portion of sales I donate to Canine Epilepsy research! I am just so thrilled...time to do some wooing with the FiveSibes, and look up at the shining stars and blow my Gibbie a kiss.

The following is an Amazon affiliate link...should you choose to purchase my book through this link, I will receive a tiny commission at no extra cost to you! Plus, you'll be assured that you are indeed ordering a book that will be hand-packed by me, and I can promise even a strand or two of the FiveSibes Husky fur!


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

K9 Epilepsy Awareness: Family and Friends ~and~ Remembering Hu-Nanny & Gibson


Family and friends are so important to families sharing their lives with an Epi-dog, from being supportive emotionally as well as helping hands-on when necessary. They help lift us up on the difficult days, and enjoy all the happy days in between! Days 13 and 14 of the #30DaysForEpiNovember #CanineEpilepsy Photo Challenge, hosted by Kimberley and Epi-dog Rolo of the Confessions of a Rescue Mom blog all month long for November's Epilepsy Awareness Month, focuses on Family and Friends.

Our beloved pets are a part of our families, and for my Day #13 "Family" photo challenge pic, I'm sharing one of my favorite FiveSibes family portrait (with a creative twist!) 




For Day #14 - "Friends" - a fun and wonderful visit with my FiveSibes, with kisses from Gibbie, with Frankie, her mom, and best friend. Frankie and Gibson shared a very special bond - they both have epilepsy. This was such a special day, I will always keep close to my heart!

And today, Day #15 - is "Rock Something Purple" - and it is also the second anniversary of my Mom, the FiveSibes Hu-Nanny, earning her angel wings. We miss her so much every single day, and with Gibson joining her just one month later, I'm dedicating this photo of my two special angels "rockin' the purple" now together forever in Heaven.




Saturday, November 11, 2017

Thank You, Veterans


Today is Veterans Day in the United States and a day to honor and thank our veterans - human and K9 soldiers. 

A special event is the advance screenings today of the new HBO film War Dog: A Soldier's Best Friend that according to the film's promo is  "...a deeply personal documentary that highlights the intimate relationship between soldiers and their K9s who serve together as human/animal teams in combat." Here is a sneak peak:



The film will premiere on Monday, November 13, so check your local listings. I know I am eager to watch this special documentary! But, I have a feeling we will all need a box of tissues near by.


For more information and news about our U.S. War Dogs and their handlers, visit The United States War Dog Association.



Today is also Day #11 - "Throwback Photo" -  of the #30DaysForEpiNovember #Canine Epilepsy Photo Challenge hosted by Kim and her partner, Epi-dog "Rolo" of Confessions of a Rescue Mom. With it being Veterans Day, our FiveSibes challenge photo is of my angel Gibson honoring our Military War Dogs and their handlers.




To all our veterans, human and canine,  
Thank You for your service. 

As always, I dedicate this Veterans Day post to my favorite veteran and hero, my dad.




Friday, November 10, 2017

A Fond Fall Flashback Friday


Since beautiful Autumn has arrived in all of its colorful glory, and this is also the month for Epilepsy Awareness Month, it is only fitting that today's Flashback Friday photo be of my Epi-warrior, Gibson. Participating in the Confessions of a Rescue Mom's #30DaysForEpiNovember #CanineEpilepsy Photo Challenge, each day unfolds a day in the life of Gibson. It's almost as if this challenge has become a photo essay of his life. Some of the photos are posted here and some are on other social media sites - our FiveSibes Facebook page and on Instagram. Each one gets me thinking and remembering... Yesterday's challenge was "Fear" and boy, was that a tough one. At the end of this month, I think I'm going to do a slideshow of all 30 days of the photo challenge...a glimpse into the life of an Epi-dog. What do you think?

Today's quote is a perfect one for my strong boy. It's almost as if it were written with Gibson in mind. 

"He didn't tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it." ~Clarence Buddington Kelland

We can sure learn a lot from our beloved dogs. 
We only have to watch and listen.




Do you have a photo from your pet's past that you'd like to share? Come stroll down Memory Lane with us here at FiveSibes and join in our Flashback Friday blog hop (we are open all week, so join in any time)! Just post your pic on your blog, grab our badge from below (yes, that's Gibson & little bro, pupster Wolfie!) & link to our blog, then join the blog hop below so others can come visit and see your flashback photos, too! A fun way to relive past fun times with our pets, present and past, and a great way to kick off a weekend!  (To see past posts, put "Flashback Friday" in our Search bar at top of blog). We hope you'll join us for some Friday fun!

Grab our Badge
 & Hop Along!





 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

#30DaysForEpiNovember - Day 8: Happiness


My beloved Epidog, Gibson, brought me so much happiness...one of the moments that comes to mind was my birthday in 2015, where his beautiful likeness was on my cake, and he even managed to sneak in a few happy licks! ;-) Three months later, he crossed the #RainbowBridge. Grab those happy moments and cherish them! 

Join us in the K9 Epilepsy Awareness Photo Challenge hosted by Confessions of a Rescue Mom!






Sunday, November 5, 2017

#30DaysForEpiNovember: Day 5 is Strength; Unveiling the New #LiveGibStrong Logo

Today we are talking about "strength." And to me...that word is synonymous with Gibson. In honor of my strong, brave, beautiful angel Epi warrior, I am proud to unveil our new #LiveGibStrong logo! You may have started to see it on a few of my Canine Epilepsy Awareness posts, and you will see it on my new website, that I will be unveiling this month. While this logo had been designed a few years ago, prior to Gib's journeying to north of the Rainbow Bridge, the time just was not right to unveil it. Today, I feel it in my heart and soul that it's the perfect time. The logo, which is based on the Gibson cartoon character from my FiveSibes Tale books, depicts Gibson being "Gib Strong," meaning that dogs with Canine Epilepsy are true warriors, they do not give up, they enjoy their days in between seizures, and may they live strong.

With November being National Epilepsy Awareness Month, I am also joining Kimberley Matchem and Epi-dog "Rolo" from Confessions of a Rescue Mom blog who is hosting a #30DaysForEpiNovember photo challenge to bring awareness to #CanineEpilepsy and getting folks to talk about it. As part of the challenge (as you can see from her list below), each day that coincides with the days of the month, we post a photo on social media - Facebook (FiveSibes: Siberian Husky K9 News & Reviews) and Instagram (@FiveSibesMom) that depicts the topic. Also be sure to follow Confessions of a Rescue Mom on Facebook to see Rolo's pics! Today is Day 5 and it is Strength. And that is what our FiveSibes #LiveGibStrong K-9 Epilepsy Awareness logo is about and we hope that it brings hope and inspiration to families and caretakers of Epi-dogs worldwide. 

 

Another depiction of Gibson's amazing strength is a video I created of him at one of his strongest moments post-rehabilitation.

Wow. This is still so difficult to write about. Especially going back and reading my entries before and during Gibson's sudden illness in December 2015. But, for him, I will now be strong and so I may retell his story in the hopes that it will encourage and inspire others...

It was on November 30, 2015, and unbeknownst to me, it was exactly 16 days before Gibson passed away during surgery for hemangiosarcoma and a bleeding spleen, that I had posted the following video that depicted just how strong my Epi-warrior was. As many of my readers and FiveSibes fans know, Gibson experienced a weak hind and bouts of lethargy and ataxia as a result of his anti-seizure medications. He was on a maintenance program of alternative therapies that consisted of cold laser treatments (see photo at left of Gib receiving an in-home treatment from one of his vet techs), massage, and walks where I assisted him with a lift harness. On November 30, I was able to let him walk free and he ran up our ramp so proudly! My heart soared. The following is the excerpt from that blog post:

His treatment plan included medications (at first), then I weaned him off pharmaceuticals and had him start on nutraceuticals to help alleviate the pain in his joints and hind end. Supplements, laser therapy, massage, Reiki, leg stability braces, and a lift harness to help reteach him to walk over a period of 18 months. Then he had a setback when he slipped and then tore his CCL. Back to the beginning for rehab.  It was a long, slow road to recovery. Each little sign of strength made my heart soar, and encouraged him to keep going.

It was long days of lifting an almost 100-pound Husky with the aid of the lift harness, to get him down a ramp so he could do his business. He could not place any weight on his legs. The leg braces helped. Then suddenly one day he put some weight on one foot. A huge milestone. Then he put weight on the other foot. Then he walked with me holding him up less. Then one day, the braces came off. His walks around the yard became longer. He began to have some pep in his step. And after almost two years, the lift harness came off and he was able to walk on his own!
Seeing the lift harness hanging idly on a hook by the back door warms my heart as I am astonished at how far he's come. There was a time when I feared he'd never be out of it. But, I was prepared to help him walk for however long he needed me to. And then one day it happened...Gibson ran! Oh happy Husky! Tears streamed down my cheeks that first day! See here in this video (may not show up on all devices) how my boy is a proud fighter:


Best.Day.Ever. 



I'm well aware that each day he feels great is a gift. As any Epi-dog parent can tell you - whether it's the fear of the seizure monster returning, or sudden hind end weakness, or lameness, or other side effects from the meds, it just warms my heart to see him being a happy, carefree Husky! And I will be right be his side to help him stay that way. And should he stumble or fall, I will be there again to help him get back up and support him. Amazing just doesn't seem "wow" enough to describe this boy's zest, will, and determination. He is a true warrior and may he always and forever #LiveGibStrong.
 

 

 
He is my inspiration.

He is my canine superhero.

He is my Gibson.

  
Today, my furangel Gibson is still my inspiration, always my canine superhero.
To read more of this special post about my Epi All-Star, visit HERE.




"Strength doesn't come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn't."
~Rikki Rogers 


 To read about Gibson and 123 other amazing Epi-Dogs from across the world, check out my book, EPIc Dog Tales: Heartfelt Stories About Amazing Dogs Living & Loving Life With Canine Epilepsy. A portion of sales is donated to the Epil-K9 Foundation for research trials and projects through the North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine's Companion Animal Epilepsy program. 

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