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Saturday 30 August 2014

Brianna's protector Charlie to get award as his story goes global

Dan Danaher

Published 18/10/2013 | 05:00

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Brianna Lynch, who suffers from epilepsy, pictured with her dog Charlie
Brianna Lynch with mum Arabella at their home in Killaloe, Co Clare

HIS supernatural ability and sixth sense protects the life of his beloved three-year-old owner.

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And now Charlie the Great Dane is to be honoured with a national award for helping to detect the epileptic seizures of toddler Brianna Lynch, from Killaloe, Co Clare.

The story of the gentle giant went around the world when his unique ability to predict the little girl's seizures was revealed.

The special bond between the two means that he can detect her seizure up to 20 minutes before it starts – and gently guides the child to the wall, not leaving her until someone comes to her aid.

Their story featured on websites including the BBC, MSN and the 'Huffington Post' and Brianna's mother, Arabella, said she has been "overwhelmed" with all the support and good wishes generated as a result of her campaign to purchase a new ambulatory EEG machine.

Having joined forces with Deirdre Cullinan, from Ahane, whose three-year-old daughter, Mia, is also being treated for epilepsy, they have now raised over €15,000.

They are just €3,000 short of the €18,000 needed to purchase the machine which has been sanctioned by the University Hospital, Limerick.

Clare Ryan, of the Irish Great Dane Club – who bred Charlie – acknowledged Charlie's protective sense is surprising. "Great Danes are known for their temperament – they are known to be solid family members. It shows that pedigree dogs can really do amazing things," she said.

Charlie will be officially recognised by the Irish Great Dane club at a national ceremony in Dublin next year.

Irish Independent

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