Ifza Tindall, 23 from Sheffield is taking part in Dog Jog Sheffield this August to raise money for Motor Neurone Disease Association.

Back in 2007, Ifza and her family received the devastating news that her father suffered from the disease.

“We didn’t realise my father had MND until after many trips to different doctors who initially diagnosed him with MS. The first signs were a trip here and there, and then the first bit of muscle loss was in the area between his first finger and thumb, a place I would forget I even have muscle until I see someone without it.” she explained.

MND is a debilitating illness which stops the signals travelling from your brain to your muscles, leading to the deterioration of muscle tissue, leading to paralysis.

Motor Neurone Disease Association helps provide those who are affected and their families, with information on the disease, as well as managing symptoms, treatment, care and financial support.

“When my father was diagnosed with MND 13 years ago, the association stepped in with counselling support and more MND specific support. They offered support groups to attend for not only my dad but the whole family affected, as well as training on how to care for someone with MND. They helped us develop techniques to support him to provide him with the best quality of life possible.” Ifza said.

She went on to describe details of the fantastic support her and her family have received.

“They provided us with an electric chair to help my dad get in and out of the chair to watch egg heads – he’s very intelligent but has lost the ability to communicate, game shows are a way to stimulating thinking.

They provided physical aids such as straps to collect the bottom of the leg to the foot to stop the foot from dropping as my father could no longer control the movement of his foot. They provided protein shakes to maintain muscle retention because he is now unable to chew, and also helped out with nurses trained specifically to deal with MND symptoms.

Palliative care should never be overlooked, but is one of the most important parts of
care for someone with a terminal illness.” she said.

Ifza followed in her dad’s footsteps with a keen interest in weight lifting and going to the gym, however she’s not a keen runner, so thought Dog Jog Sheffield would be the perfect challenge for her to push herself out of her comfort zone!

Ifza said: “My four legged friend is called Toby and he is a miniature poodle. He loves running, mainly in circles around a sock, but running none-the-less. Training for this run has given us the opportunity to bond and spend time together, he motivates me because he can run so far and fast and when I lag he waits for me.”

The Dog Jog Series provides a brilliant opportunity for runners to accomplish their personal goals with their dogs; whether raising money for a worthwhile cause or simply keeping fit.

Dog Jogs are all about a friendly, relaxed and fun atmosphere for everyone involved with no time limits or pressure. Each participant will receive a Doggy Bag jam-packed with goodies for both runner and dog to enjoy once they cross the finish line. There’s no other event like it in the UK.

The events are also a great way for participants to raise money for a charity they really care about, whether it be a dog-related charity or otherwise.

“The MND association does some brilliant work for a very important cause, the severity of this illness needs to be addressed and tackled. As fun as running with my furry best friend is, my intention is to use the run as a means of publicising the illness, raising awareness of the charity and ultimately money to support them in their efforts.” said Ifza.

Entries for the Dog Jog series are now open for all events throughout the UK. For more information and to find an event near you, visit the website: www.dogjog.co.uk.

To read more about Ifza’s story and donate, please visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ifza-tindall