Traveling Dog Lady: Purple Day for Epilepsy 2017

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Purple Day for Epilepsy 2017

Today, March 26, 2017, is Purple Day for Epilepsy, and we're joining FiveSibes bloghop to bring awareness to epilepsy in both humans and animals.

I've known a few animals that had epilepsy. One of our cats on Cape Cod, many years ago, had epilepsy. She would have horrible seizures, where she would spin around on the floor and lose control of her bodily functions in the process. The poor thing, she was such a love bug, too.

My beloved dog Hector had seizures, but it turned out they were due to a head injury that went undetected. We were told he had either epilepsy, or a brain tumor, and we were treating his seizures with phenobarbital. Hec only had seizures for about 5 months before he ended up dying very suddenly from whatever was wrong with his head. I am STILL not over his death, nearly six years later. This one was the worst. He was taken from us much too young, and the last months of his life were spent helplessly watching him suffer.

My beloved dogs, Hector (standing) and Hobie.

While Hector's seizures were from an injury, they were pretty much identical to epileptic seizures in terms of his disorientation, he would go temporarily blind afterwards, he would be really energetic during the post-ichtal phase, yet at the same time profoundly confused. He would also try to crawl into small spaces such as the closet and the fireplace, or under a desk. He did not recognize us after the post-ichtal phase, so it was hard to calm him down as he didn't know who we were and he just wanted to run around in the back yard. During the seizures themselves, he could be very dangerous as he was a big dog, and he would be paddling his legs, knocking things over, and snapping his jaws. Gosh, it was just awful to see our wonderful young dog go through that.

I, myself experienced what we THINK were seizures most of my life. Doctors could never figure it out, but they would hit me once a month. I had auras and would be in intense pain, and I would also lose control like the cat mentioned above, plus I would sleep for hours and hours afterwards. When I went into menopause, the seizures pretty much stopped. So, we will probably never figure out what that was.

But, I mention my own experience with this because I had an amazing dog, Hobie, who could detect my episodes (I called them episodes -- notice the Greek prefix "epi" is the root word of episode and epilepsy). Hobie would lie on top of me on the couch and not let me get up. He knew (I didn't) that if I got up, I would have an episode and end up on the floor. If I was already up, he would bark at me. I wish we had been able to pursue this as a therapy dog thing, but he certainly was helpful to me. When I did have episodes, he would lie beside me on the floor and cuddle with me and lick my face. He was just amazing.

My favorite color is purple. Just about everything I own is purple (ok, that's an exaggeration! Close, but an exaggeration!). As part of today's awareness campaign, we want to show ourselves and our pets wearing purple. So, here are some pictures of us from today (and I was already wearing purple today anyway -- gee what a surprise).

Please note I've been sitting around the house in my pajamas all day. Hey, it's Sunday.

Cooper has a purple tennis ball!
My purple laptop case!

Purple paw pajamas and purple fibromyalgia t-shirt

      Charlie steals the show in his Purple Petfinder bandana!


1 comment:

  1. Thank you for joining us in our annual FiveSibes #LiveGibStrong Purple Day blog hop! You guys look great in (and with) your purple items! I love that laptop case! Hobie sounds like an amazing dog. Dogs can be excellent seizure detectors. I hope this finds you doing well and seizure free. (I saw you were wearing purple for fibromyalgia...I have FM and RA. We should talk!) And hugs to your beautiful Cooper and Charlie!


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