herald

Thursday 14 December 2017

A SPECIAL dog will show that he is truly man's best friend when he accompanies his owner, who has MS, as he walks the width of Ireland.

A SPECIAL dog will show that he is truly man's best friend when he accompanies his owner, who has MS, as he walks the width of Ireland.

Paul McGovern (35) says his dog Nanook will be by his side every step of the way for the 150 mile walk later this month.

Paul got the Alaskan malamute after he was diagnosed in 2009 and he has proven his loyalty to his owner as he has already come to his rescue, not once, but twice.

"Twice I was in the back garden trying to sort out the lawn and collapsed and it was Nanook that got me up," he explained.

Paul said Nanook (4) had run from his pen and barked at him, he then ran around Paul and began to grab at his legs and shaking him "until I got up. He wouldn't stop until I got up and he stayed with me until I was up and standing again."

Paul is generally in very good health and his MS is very well managed.

For Paul, and his wife Karen, Nanook has been part of their journey with MS to date and he will be with them during his fund-raising walk.

It will see Paul and Nanook walk from the West coast to the East coast of Ireland - a total of approximately 150 miles.

Alaskan Malamute's are by nature "an endurance dog and strong in personality. They are also working dogs," said Paul.

The pair hope to complete the walk over ten days starting on March 28.

They are leaving from Salthill in Galway and heading for Dunleer in Louth and Paul is doing it because, "I want to raise awareness for MS and for 'MS Ireland' who do so much good work."

He also revealed that he was diagnosed with a pituitary gland tumour last year but it won't stop him undertaking the walk either.

"What I really need is someone to donate the use of a campervan for the two weeks," said Paul

He wants it to use during the walk and also to carry all of their equipment and supplies as well as holding the special food for Nanook.

They will also be sure that there is a van that Nanook can use to rest in if he gets tired or wants a day off and Paul will walk that day on his own.

Paul says Karen has been his 'rock' and "not many people would enter into marriage when their partner has been diagnosed with MS."

More details can be found on his Facebook page 'Charity Walk 4 MS Ireland," or by searching for "MS Ireland Nanook".

Promoted articles

Entertainment News