Thursday March 24, 2016
Evie the epilepsy hero By Nikki Papatsoumas
A one-of-a-kind dog is helping to raise awareness about epilepsy - not just for humans but for her canine friends. Five-and-a-half year old Evie the Jack Russell was diagnosed with epilepsy when she was 14-months-old. Her owner, Jennifer Jarden, said while most dogs with epilepsy get put down, as it was difficult to treat them, Evie had quickly become part of the family and it was never an option. “She’s just part of the family, I couldn’t do that to her, we love her too much.” Jennifer said Evie suffers from seizures once every three months, but with the help of her vet and other pet owners in similar situations, she has learnt how to manage Evie’s condition. This includes avoiding rosemary in foods, certain shampoos and strenuous exercise. Evie also takes the same medication prescribed to humans who suffer from the illness. “It’s a real commitment. We never know when it is going to happen. It is quite unusual in New Zealand to come across a
dog that is epileptic.” After learning of Evie’s condition, Jennifer started attending meetings run by Epilepsy New Zealand and also began to host support groups for parents with children who suffer from epilepsy. Through her connections with Epilepsy New Zealand, Evie has become a poster dog for the organisation, helping raise awareness around the illness. “Because it is a unique story we can reach a wide audience, there are people that are animal lovers that don’t realise dogs have epilepsy…it’s all about awareness.” Gillian Davies from Epilepsy New Zealand said she had come across dogs and cats with epilepsy before. She said it was “wonderful” to have Jennifer and Evie on board. “Evie is such a gorgeous little dog and it’s a wonderful way to introduce what epilepsy is. Learning about what epilepsy is is the biggest thing.” During March, Epilepsy New Zealand encouraged people to wear purple to raise awareness for the illness, Gillian said. “We want to help people un-
the message was not getting through to everyone, Mayor of Wellington, Celia WadeBrown said. Ms Wade-Brown said things were improving but Wellingtonians could do much better. “We did a waste assessment analysis of official yellow rubbish bags in 2011 which showed up to half the contents were made up of paper, tins, cans, and plastic – all of which could be cleaned and recycled.” The Wellington City Council’s environment committee
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Jennifer Jarden with Evie the Jack Russell, who suffers from epilepsy.
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derstand that epilepsy is not just having a seizure… it’s a way of life and learning how to manage that way of life. “For people with recent diagnosis for family members it can be a hell of a shock. It is great to be able to go out and talk
chairwoman, Iona Pannett, said some streets had been blacklisted after green recycling bags were used to dispose of general household rubbish. She said a few bad apples had tainted it for everyone in the community. “We know most residents are good recyclers, and their households may be doing everything right, but unfortunately too many residents in some streets have been using the green recycling bags to dispose of general household
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Movie Museum Most people expressed support for a proposed movie museum and convention centre at Monday’s Wellington City Council meeting. The proposed $134 million facility opposite Te Papa will bring an estimated 300,000 people into the city each year. Mayor of Wellington, Celia Wade-Brown, said “positive enthusiasm for the world class Movie Museum tells us we were right to speed up its development”. The council would partner with private interests headed by Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh, Richard Taylor and Tania Rodger to deliver the museum.
to them and make their lives easier.” For more information, head to www.eplilepsy.org.nz For more information on Evie’s story, head to Jennifer Jarden’s Facebook page.
Council makes it easy to recycle Free packs of green recycling bags will be delivered to about 26,000 Wellington households over the next couple of months – making it easy, and free, for locals to recycle. However, some residents will not receive their bags as they have been ‘black listed’ due to ongoing rubbish offences. Wellington residents recycle about 12,000 tonnes of material a year but with 84,000 tonnes of waste ending up at the Southern Landfill,
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rubbish. “This is a widespread problem in some areas, but we inform the neighbourhood of the situation and they can request the green bags through our service centre.” Green recycling bags can be used for all recyclables except glass. Residents can have two glass crates per household. Properties that have a council wheelie bin will not receive green bags. For more information, head to wcc.govt.nz
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Cook Strait News 24-03-16