The Fight Against Canine Cancer

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By Jim Tedford, Director of Animal Welfare Initiatives and Alliances

Jim and Ann Tedford enjoy an evening raising money for canine cancer research.

Jim and Ann Tedford enjoy an evening raising money for canine cancer research.

Cancer stinks. There is no way around it. Whether it strikes a close relative, a good friend…or you, it is a devastating disease. It stinks!

A few facts about the impact of this killer on man’s (and woman’s) best friend:

  • HALF of all dogs will be affected by cancer.
  • Cancer is the leading cause of death in dogs over the age of 2.
  • Risk increases with age.
  • As many as 60% of Golden Retrievers are impacted by cancer. Some other breeds are more susceptible, as well.

If you have ever loved a dog who has been impacted by this disease, you are not alone. It seems that everyone I encounter has been touched. Either they have lost pets to cancer or they’ve had close friends or relatives who have lost dogs.

In our case, his name was Otis. He was a big black Lab with a heart of gold. He loved us all, but he especially loved his “Mom.” At the end of the workday he would wait anxiously at the door and would follow her every step. Thankfully, Otis lived a long, happy life. But ultimately, he was taken by a nasty brain tumor that robbed him of his spirit in his waning days.

A treats buffet was a big hit!

A treats buffet was a big hit!

Our friends at the Morris Animal Foundation are doing something about it, though! Driven by their passion for all life and their desire to improve veterinary science, the Foundation awards grants to the best and brightest researchers out there. Ultimately, that research will lead to better treatments and a cure for canine cancer.

PetSafe is proud to partner with Morris Animal Foundation. Together we want to give dog lovers more and more “best moments” with their best friends! On August 2, 2014 we held the third annual PetSafe Black Tie & Tails Gala benefiting Morris Animal Foundation. This dog-friendly gala was held in downtown Knoxville, Tennessee –home base of Radio Systems Corporation, the PetSafe parent company. The festive event was attended by nearly 170 dog lovers and about 40 dogs dressed to the “caNINES.” Attendees were treated to a delicious dinner, fabulous entertainment and the opportunity to bid on dozens of wonderful items donated for our silent and live auctions (I walked away with a weekend getaway to Naples, Florida!).

The event had Emmett as the guest of honor.

The event had Emmett as the guest of honor.

There were many dignitaries present including Radio Systems Corporation CEO Randy Boyd and Morris Animal Foundation President/CEO Dr. David Haworth. But, in true canine fashion, the spotlight was completely stolen by our guest of honor, Emmett and his humans Maggie and John. Emmett is living with hemangiosarcoma, a form of blood cancer. He and his folks recently made the PetSafe headquarters one of the stops on “Emmett’s Epic Road Trip” as he checked things off his “bucket list”. Guests at the gala enjoyed the premier screening of a video cataloguing Emmett’s journey through life and cancer. Enjoy Emmett’s story yourself by clicking here!

The PetSafe Black Tie & Tails Gala gave lots of dog lovers the chance to dress up and celebrate all the love we have for our canine companions. But, more importantly, we raised $40,000 for Morris Animal Foundation to support the ongoing fight against canine cancer.

Take a moment to hug your dog..take him for an extra walk today. And, when you get home, log on to the Morris Animal Foundation website and show your support for canine cancer research. We wish you many more happy years and miles and miles of long walks with your best friends!

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