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Saturday, July 25, 2015

Fighting For Frankie: A Community Helping a Therapy Dog Who Has Helped So Many Others

"Frankie" Ekberg of The Husky Brothers
Here's a story about a beautiful red and white Siberian Husky boy named "Frankie." Frankie is one of four Siberian Huskies from Long Island, New York known as The Husky Brothers, who are part of the Facebook group, The Empire State Snow Dog Club, 
a group I'm proud to say I'm a member of! The Huskies also have their own Facebook page called The Husky Brothers, and older brothers Frankie and Cain have their own book, penned by their mom, Jodi Ekberg! The Husky Brothers are pretty well-known around the Long Island/New York City area. Frankie is a certified Therapy Dog, bringing lots of smiles and good wishes to ailing hospital patients. Frankie and Cain helped their hu-mom, Jodi, through cancer diagnosis, treatments, therapy, and depression, giving her the will to live and keep on working to get better...until one day, she did! Jodi was a guest on a past episode of my show "The Sibe Vibe" on Dog Works Radio and also downloadable from iTunes (under Dog Works Radio family of shows). And Frankie's work as a Therapy Dog has been was highlighted by News 12 Long Island.

Check out the Club's Facebook Group Page  HERE

Jodi and her boys have been very active in events, meet ups, and fundraisers put on by The Empire State Snow Dogs Club, when suddenly,  Frankie was diagnosed with terminal cancer, lymphoma, and was given only a few weeks to a few months to live. Devastated, Jodi refused to give up on her boy who gives so much to other people...and who helped save her life when she had cancer.
"These Huskies are not just dogs," notes Jodi. "They are my boys. They are my children. I am not going to give up on Frankie. He never gave up on me when I had cancer and wanted to give up. I'm going to do everything I can to help him. Our group (The Empire State Snow Dogs Club) is just amazing. These people are not just fellow Husky lovers. They are all so caring...and we truly care about each other and each other's Huskies. We are not just a group, we are true friends."

Jodi and Frankie on a hospital visit.
 Watch Frankie working, with his mom Jodi, and helping patients in Oceanside before his cancer diagnosis at South Nassau Communities Hospital HERE. Video from News 12 Long Island.

To hear Jodi talk all about her boys (pre Frankie's cancer diagnosis) and The Husky Brothers book, tune in here to my show "The Sibe Vibe," where we get to learn all about these amazing Huskies who helped Jodi with her own cancer diagnosis and recovery.


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 Frankie the Therapy Dog's Cancer Diagnosis in the News:



Frankie saw a specialist who suggested chemo treatments to help shrink the tumors. These treatments are extremely expensive. And the Husky and Snow Dog community that Frankie, Jodi, and The Husky Brothers are part of have all pulled together and are rallying behind Frankie - #FightingForFrankie to be #FrankieStrong. To help the Ekberg's pay for the much-needed treatments that could save Frankie's life - so many wonderful angels on Earth have set up ways to help raise funds:

  •  Frankie's Online Cancer Auction - So many wonderful donated items (125 to be exact!) up for bid for ongoing auction over on Instagram by @SiberianMischief ~ click HERE to visit auction (ends Sunday, July 26 at 10 PM EST).
Two items on the bidding block are Jodi's book and my own. I ask that you please pop over and check out this amazing auction Jeanine Chang has organized with so many wonderful donations from all over! The link to the Auction on Instagram (you can access it via computer, too) is: https://instagram.com/siberianmischief/

BID ON THIS ITEM HERE
BID ON THIS ITEM HERE
  • A "For Frankie" You Caring straight donation drive HERE.
  • Ordering a "Frankie Strong" bandana HERE.
  • Ordering a "Frankie Strong" T-Shirt HERE

Again, the link to the auction (which ends tomorrow - Sunday, July 26 at 10 PM EST) is:  https://instagram.com/siberianmischief/. For more info and links to all the above, you can check out the #FrankieStrong online brochure HERE.


"I can never thank everyone who has pulled together to support my Frankie enough. So many wonderful, caring angels here on Earth." ~Jodi Ekberg, Frankie's Hu-Mom

Frankie, we are all joining in a #pawcircle of healing, love, and prayers for you! Stay strong, and we know you'll one day be back at work in the hospitals sharing your own inspirational story and continuing to encourage and help people in need.



Friday, July 24, 2015

Puppy Love on a Frisky Flashback Friday!

Many times folks ask me what it's like raising three puppies at once or what's it like living with five Siberian Huskies, with three of them puppies? While it is a lot of work...it is SO fun! While looking through photos and videos for today's post, I came across a few videos seven years ago, June 2008, when the "Pupsters" Wolf, Chloe, and Bandit were just a mere five months old, while big brother Gibson was two-years-old, and surrogate momma Harley was just three. The many hours of just watching them all interact is something I will remember ~ and smile at ~ fondly forever. 



Happy Flashback Friday!


Flashback Fridays are brought to you by us - the FiveSibes - and our co-host, Love is being owned by a Husky, each Friday. We hope you'll find a photo or video from Memory Lane, post it, and link up to our blog hop each week! If you don't catch it on Friday, you can link up any time during the week! To catch our past Flashbacks, just enter "Flashback Friday" in the search box! We hope you'll come join us!
 


Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Hu-Nanny Hospital Update: Meeting Mia the Therapy Dog


As many of you know, my Mom, the ‪#‎FiveSibes‬ Hu-Nanny, has been hospitalized. I want to personally thank everyone for all the lovely and caring prayers, comments, notes, Emails, and Tweets. They mean so much to us. Yesterday was a rough day for Hu-Nanny, but a highlight was when she met "Mia," this very pretty Therapy Dog! Mia, a Standard Poodle, connected with my Mom and even gave her hand a kiss! She encouraged Mom to sit up for a few minutes, even when she did not feel well. Mom talked and reminisced about all three of her past Poodle babies - Misty, Princie, and Joy. So important since she is experiencing some confusion. It was a wonderful visit from Mia - and to see the positive effects of a Therapy Dog firsthand was just heartwarming. ‪‎


Friday, July 17, 2015

Family Emergency

Hello, dear fellow Blogville family...due to a family emergency with my 94-year-old mother who fell three days ago and has been hospitalized with pneumonia, a secondary infection, a broken foot, bruises and contusions, and a heart arrythmia, I will be off the blogging grid for a short while to be with her as she is in the hospital. After they clear up her pneumonia, they will be transferring her to a rehab facility for an unknown period of time to help heal her broken foot and see why she is unable to walk, and if she can even walk again. I also will not be able to attend this weekend's Canine Epilepsy Expo & Fundraiser in Long Island, NY.  I do hope if you were planning on attending, you'll still go and support this worthwhile cause! The hosts, The Empire State Snow Dog Club, will be there with Huskies galore, booths, raffles, and you can meet adoptable Petco dogs! Anyone who is interested in receiving info on Canine Epilepsy that I was going to bring, please feel free to Email me at FiveSibesLiveGibStrong(AT)gmail(DOT)com and I'll be happy to get the info to you via snail mail. I hope to be back blogging as soon as things settle down with Mom. Thank you all so much for your love, support, and prayers.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Today is National Pet Fire Safety Day: Do You Have A Plan?


Today is National Pet Fire Safety Day ~and~ Blog the Change for Animals, so we here at the FiveSibes want to once again talk about the importance of Pet Fire Safety. We believe so strongly in Pet Fire Safety, that we chose to talk about it once again featuring tips, recommendations, a photo of a fireman in our own family, a video of a Husky who was burned and rescued from a house fire, and an in-depth heart-to-heart conversation with the Husky's mom and neighbor about the frightening ordeal. The goal of this post, reshared from last year, is to share vital information that could possibly safe a pet's life...or at the very least, give each family some peace of mind that they have done all they can in preparation for, but hopefully never have to experience, a fire where their pets are.

So many times we all settle into our daily lives with routines that take us from morning until night, weekdays until the weekend. But how many of us have stopped to make an emergency plan not only for human family members, but for our pet family members as well? 

 "...40,000 pets die every year in home fires." ~American Kennel Club

 In case of a fire, you may have an escape route mapped out for your family, but does it include your furry members? A little forethought and pre-planning could help save a life.

According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), "...40,000 pets die every year in home fires." That's a frightening statistic. So what can we do to reduce that number? First, the AKC has teamed up with ADT Security Systems to designate an annual national Pet Fire Safety Day on July 15 to help bring awareness and hopefully reduce this statistic by offering the following helpful suggestions:


Tips for Helping Prevent Your Pets From Starting Fires 
Courtesy of the AKC

 

*Extinguish open flames: Pets are generally curious and will investigate cooking appliances, candles, or even a fire in your fireplace. Ensure your pet is not left unattended around an open flame and make sure to thoroughly extinguish any open flame before leaving your home.


* Remove stove knobs: Be sure to remove stove knobs or protect them with covers before leaving the house – a stove or cook top is the number one piece of equipment involved in your pet starting a fire.


* Invest in flameless candles: These candles contain a light bulb rather than an open flame, and take the danger out of your pet knocking over a candle. Cats are notorious for starting fires when their tails turn over lit candles.


* Beware of glass water bowls on wooden decks: Do not leave a glass water bowl for your pet outside on a wooden deck. The sun’s rays when filtered through the glass and water can actually heat up and ignite the wooden deck beneath it. Choose stainless steel or ceramic bowls instead.


* Pet proof the home: Take a walk around your home and look for areas where pets might start fires inadvertently (FiveSibesMom note: And get down to their eye level to see what they would come in contact with when both standing, and if they jump up).



Other Important "To Dos"


* Keep pets near entrances when away from home: When leaving pets home alone, keep them in crates, areas, or rooms near entrances where firefighters can easily find them. (FiveSibesMom note: And be sure to have current safety window clings up on the nearest window or door to where your pets are. Keep current ID tags on your pets' collars, too, in case they become lost or separated from their hu-parents. And keep their leashes nearby).



* Secure young pets: Especially with young puppies, keep them confined away from potential fire-starting hazards when you are away from home, such as in crates or behind baby gates in secure areas.


* Practice escape routes with pets: Keep collars and leashes at the ready in case you have to evacuate quickly with your pet or firefighters need to rescue your pet. (FiveSibesMom note: have a designated trusted neighbor or nearby relative to be the emergency contact person in your absence).


* Consider using monitored smoke detection services: As an added layer of protection beyond battery-operated smoke alarms, smoke detectors connected to a monitoring center help save pets who can't escape when left home alone. 



* Affix a pet alert window cling: Write down the number of pets inside your house and attach the static cling to a front window to each room where they are in. This critical information saves rescuers precious time during a fire to locate your pets. Make sure to keep the number of pets listed on them updated.You can fill out a form through the ASPCA HERE to obtain your FREE Pet Safety Pack that includes a window decal alert shown below.



Does your Fire Department Have a Pet Oxygen Mask?

Over the past few years, more and more fire departments have been equipped with pet oxygen masks. Check with your fire department to see if they have them, or if they need one, have them check out Project Breathe by Invisible Fence HERE and the department's Fire Chief can fill out an application HERE for a possible donation of a kit (which includes a small, medium, and large pet mask and bag). This is dependent upon participation from your local Invisible Fence, but it is certainly worth a phone call that could possibly wind up with your fire department receiving a pet oxygen mask kit! Be sure to tell them the FiveSibes sent you over!

While we all hope and pray a fire never starts in our homes and that our family and furfamily members are never in this type of danger, it can and does happen. On a recent episode of my Dog Works Radio show "The Sibe Vibe," we chatted with the hu-mom and neighbor/rescuer of a Siberian Husky named Nanuk who was trapped in the family home when it caught on fire and was burned. Hearing his mom and neighbor's retelling of what happened brings tears to my eyes...but lucky for Nanuk, he had a happy ending and even was able to go back and meet the heroic firemen who saved his life by administering oxygen to the badly injured Husky. Pictured above is Nanuk after his recuperation with several members of the Los Angeles Fire Department who saved him. And below is the family's video showing Nanuk's journey:



This episode of my "The Sibe Vibe" is a very important show to help bring awareness that this CAN happen to any one and some firsthand tips from a family who lived through it. Please share the player with friends and family to help bring awareness to Pet Fire Safety. You can also follow Nanuk on his Facebook page, Husky Nanuk, Burned in a House Fire to see how well this beautiful boy is now doing and to see all of his amazing photos! Below is the player featuring my interview with Nanuk's family:



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And above all, let's be safe out there!
A personal "thank you" to all the brave firefighters and emergency response teams who bravely put their life on the line every single day to ensure the safety of others. And also a heartfelt thanks to my future son-in-law, Kyle, who is a volunteer firefighter here in our county for all his dedication, insight, and for being part of this blog post along with his Husky love, our girl Bandit, who loves him dearly!
 



Monday, July 13, 2015

Canine Epilepsy Expo & Fundraiser: Book Signing, Meet & Greet, Adoptable Pets, and Help US Miltiary Dogs


Mark your calendars! If you are visiting the Long Island/New York/Tri-State Area on Saturday, July 18, be sure to stop over at the Garden City Park Petco™ where I will be doing a book signing and handing out information on Canine Epilepsy Awareness at The Empire State Snow Dogs Club's first Canine Epilepsy Expo & Fundraiser


Vendor Space Still Available! 
Contact snowusin(at)gmail(dot)com!

At my booth, I look forward to meeting everyone and will have copies of informational handouts from various Canine Epilepsy organizations, as well as my own books available for purchase, which I'll be happy to sign!



EPIc Dog Tales: Heartfelt Stories About Amazing Dogs Living & Loving Life With Canine Epilepsy, a 264 page beautiful color coffee-table style book filled with personal stories of 124 amazing dogs with Canine Epilepsy, plus a vast resource section.
 
~AND~

The FiveSibes™ Tale What's Wrong With Gibson?
Learning About K-9 Epilepsy illustrated children's book (a portion from each donated to Canine Epilepsy Resources/Epil-K9 Foundation's "Emma's Fund" through the North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine's Neurology Department)


The FiveSibes Tale, Getting Healthy With Harley: Learning About Health & Fitness illustrated children's book about eating healthy and getting fit (a portion donated to Save Our Siberians Siberspace Rescue Fund) 

 
Buddy, the Christmas Husky~A True Holiday Miracle based
on the true life rescue of abused, abandoned, and then saved Siberian Husky found on a snowy Christmas Day! (a portion is donated to "Buddy's Buddies" fund through the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine to help with Buddy's foster mother with expenses, and then those of other pups in need.) You can tune in to my "The Sibe Vibe" episode featuring Buddy's foster Mama Shay HERE.



(Model Gibson not included!)

We'll have our #LiveGibStrong K-9 Epilepsy Awareness bracelets, too! $2 each, with $1 from every bracelet going to Canine Epilepsy Resources/Epil-K9 Foundation's "Emma's Seizure Fund!"

 
Also at my booth, I'll be handing out samples of the delicious, wholesome, "Gibbie Snacks" ~  named after my Epi-Husky Gibson, and formulated and baked with love by House Woof Dog Biscuits, a branch of the Edelweiss Bakery in Vermont, USA. Gibbie Snacks, while all dogs will love them, were created with the Epi-dog in mind, and are free of wheat, salt, rosemary, and preservatives! Be sure to stop by and treat your dog to one, and pick up info about this fabulous dog-friendly bakery. 

For every bag of Gibbie Snacks purchased from House Woof's online store, they donate $1 to The Wally Foundation-Canine Epilepsy, who offer financial assistance for purchase of medications for families/fosters/rescues of dogs diagnosed with idiopathic epilepsy.


We have some a great basket filled with FiveSibes and "The Sibe Vibe" gifts and Paws to People: Bridges to Cures (p)awesome roll-up dog mat and water bottle!





Our boy Wolf supports our MWDs!
Have you seen the movie "Max?" Wish you could help out our U.S. Military Service Dogs? There will be a collection booth for items for our Military Service Dogs to be donated to help teams via the U.S. War Dogs Association. You can check out the Amazon Wish List HERE, or buy an item at Petco and come on out and drop it into the box! If you can't make it to the Expo, you can order from
the Wish List and have it sent. Contact Jodi at snowusin(at)gmail(dot)com for an address! 

All items collected will be shipped to the president of the U.S. War Dogs Association for distribution to the K9 teams! Our U.S. K9 soldiers thank you! 






I will also be taping various segments for this month's episode of  my "The Sibe Vibe" Dog Works Radio show!




While there, you can meet The (gorgeous) Husky Brothers, stars of their own book and of Facebook! Those gorgeous boys of Jodi Ekberg I chatted with on a previous episode of "The Sibe Vibe" HERE. (Please be sure to read next post about "Fighting for Frankie").


 
  
Meet Petco adoptable dogs! (And maybe even consider making one a forever member of your family!)
 



How About Some Husky Socks?!
 As part of our #LiveGibStrong campaign, we are SO excited to say that Gone to the Snow Dogs has designed these limited edition adorable "Shelby" socks and teamed up with us here at FiveSibes: Siberian Husky K9 News & Reviews and our ‪#‎FiveSibes‬ ‪#‎LiveGibStrong‬ K-9 Epilepsy Awareness Campaign to help raise funds for the Canine Epilepsy Resources/Epil-K9 Foundation (home of the Epil-K9 list) "Emma's Seizure Fund" that is part of the North Carolina State University College College of Veterinary Medicine Seizure Program under the direction of Dr. Karen Munana, supported by Julie Nettifee Osborne! GTTSD has designed these great purple (epilepsy awareness color) socks featuring their beautiful girl Shelby and our #LiveGibStrong hashtag! A commitment of 20 pairs needs to be sold - so let's support Canine Epilepsy Awareness and get your adorable socks while you can! Woooo - thank you Jessica and GTTSD!!!! Order Here: https://www.bakdrop.com/campaigns/livegibstrong/



Together we can make a difference in the lives of dogs with Canine Epilepsy. They can ~ and do~ live full, happy lives! 


 
 #LiveGibStrong!



Friday, July 10, 2015

Cherishing Life's Little Moments on a Flashback Friday!



Flashing back to 2006, this is one of my favorite pics of puppy Gibson with my teenager daughter. Already a big boy at just shy of six months old, he loved to make himself all comfy cozy in my daughter's lime green papasan chair, his favorite spot at the time! Seems like just yesterday...

“Enjoy the little things in life because one day you`ll look back and realize they were the big things.” ~ Kurt Vonnegut



Flashback Fridays are brought to you by us - the FiveSibes - and our co-host, Love is being owned by a Husky, each Friday. We hope you'll find a photo or video from Memory Lane, post it, and link up to our blog hop each week! If you don't catch it on Friday, you can link up any time during the week! To catch our past Flashbacks, just enter "Flashback Friday" in the search box! We hope you'll come join us!