Author: Lena Howland
After losing two golden retrievers to cancer, Jay Mesinger did not hesitate to sign 2-year-old Louie up for a groundbreaking cancer research study.
“We had Elliot and we had one other female several years ago and all of them we’ve lost… all of them had long lives, but all of them we lost to cancer,” Mesinger said.
The national study, funded by the Morris Animal Foundation in Denver, is underway at the Flint Animal Cancer Center at Colorado State.
“It was a perfect way to help the golden breed through Louie,” he said.
Golden retrievers are the third most popular dog in the nation according to the American Kennel Club statistics released last month.
“We’re going to take 3000 dogs, golden retrievers that are young, and follow them throughout their entire life,” Dr. Rodney Page, Director of the Flint Animal Cancer Center, said.
They currently have more than 150 dogs signed up for the study, so far, in hopes of reaching their goal of 3000.
The study requires a partnership with your local vet and annual physicals.
“Anytime you go to the vet for anything with the dog, that vet has to fill out the visit and send it to the Morris Foundation so that all the visits and all the problems can be tracked,” Page said.
The vets will also collect a series of samples from the dogs including blood, hair and toenails to store so that they can eventually create a story about the exposures to each individual dog. They hope to connect some of these exposures to the diseases over time.