For Canine Epilepsy awareness. As many of you know, the cause is near and dear to my heart as one of my Siberian Huskies, Gibson, was an Epi-dog (canine epileptic). He was diagnosed with idiopathic Canine Epilepsy in 2009, shortly after his third birthday. It was a very scary time and I felt very alone when he started having seizures. Ever since, I have a been strong advocate of Canine Epilepsy Awareness. Over the years I've written many articles, oodles of blog posts, and two books on the subject, as well as being a Purple Day® Ambassador, a volunteer case manager for The Wally Foundation~Canine Epilepsy (TWF), and fundraising for related non-profits, including our very first auction that benefitted both TWF and Canine Epilepsy Resources Epil-K9 Foundation's "Emma's Seizure Fund." Gibson and I were, and I will always be, dedicated to getting important information out to the public, and will share my resources, in order to help others who are faced with a dog who has seizures so they do not ever feel scared and alone. I also want to help alleviate any uncertainties in an effort to encourage folks to consider adopting a dog who has seizures. With some special care and lots of love, Epi-dogs can live happy lives, for however long we are blessed to have them!
It's not always an easy road, and it is many times a worrisome path, but a journey to this day I feel blessed to have traveled with such an amazing companion, my boy Gibson. Through our journey, we not only formed an incredible bond, but he taught me much about perserverance, determination, trust, and just really enjoying all the simple things in life, as a dog does every single day.
His personality was as big as the sky, and his soul as deep as the ocean. He was such a special boy, and now he forever resides in my heart. I think of him every single day. I miss him every single day. He is proof that Epi-dogs can, and do, live full happy lives, however long we are blessed to have them. They are amazing, strong, determined, and so inspirational. Gibson loved life. He lived with Canine Epilepsy and many side effects from the very medications that managed his seizures, but the last seven years of his life were seizure free! In hindsight, that is a miraculous thing. Looking back over the years, each hour that turned into a day, then a week, a month, a year, and then another...was a blessing, because Epilepsy is an unknown...you never know if or when or what will be a trigger. If I had to do it all again, would I still bring home that sweet, silly wooly ball of fluff? Absolutely. Gibson and I always strived to bring hope and spread the word about awareness and help educate folks about dogs living with Canine Epilepsy and seizure disorders, encourage people to not be afraid to adopt a dog with seizures, to understand the importance of medication schedules, the time and cost commitment, and to hopefully encourage people to learn all they can about seizures so they don't drop a dog off to the nearest (already overcrowded) shelter. Once upon a time, euthanasia was the recommended course of action for dogs with seizures, and that is so NOT the case any more! There are many resources, and much support and information now available to help pet parents navigate the mysterious, and yes scary, waters of having a dog with seizures. My wish will always be for other Epi-dogs to always #LiveGibStrong, and for their families to know that they are not alone. I am always here to help guide you, just drop me a line at FiveSibesLiveGibStrong(at)gmail(dot)com.
Purple Pumpkin Pets' Parade!
Run Free, Ciara...
I'd like to dedicate today's post to a beautiful Epi-dog, "Ciara," of a dear Blogger friend from The Chronicle of Woos, who just lost her battle with Canine Epilepsy. My heart breaks at this news and Ciara will be missed. Sending hugs and much love to her hu-mom and fellow packmate, Lightning. Run free, Ciara. Find my Gibson and your angel fursiblings, and run free now girl, with no more seizures ever, through those forever snowy fields North of the Rainbow Bridge.