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2014 Calendar Contest Results

Posted by Erich Trapp on August 9, 2013

"That was FUN. Let's do it again!"

“That was FUN. Let’s do it again!”

Congratulations to the Winners and ALL of the Contestants in the 2014 Cancer Can’t Keep a Good Dog Down Calendar Contest!

Here’s the final count. Any votes that came in after the midnight EDT deadline did not apply.

Our top 13 winners are:

1 Trooper Collins 2140
2 Czar Viney 1460
3 Beta Yadao 1270
4 Gracie Calvo 1120
5 Blondie Henley 1000
6 Bentley Linaberry 1000
7 Molly Su Applegate 1000
8 Sheba Marie Pyle 960
9 Gracie Martin 940
10 Yukon Harris 900
11 Calamity Jane Rockwell 865
12 Kailech Cummins 785
13 Jigsaw Allgood 730


Also appearing in the Gallery Section will be:

Sunny Osborne 720
Pugsley Granberry 700
Maggie Snow-Cormier 660
Murphy Morris 640
Kyle Golz 510
Roscoe Behrle 510
Annie Graffunder 420
Eva Dupre 375
Shadow Wade 272
Merlin Miltner 225
Leela Decker 220
Guinnes Litt 185
Nestle Epstein 185
Joey Hanson 160
Jake Turner 155
Mogli DeWald 120
Murphy Hansen 120
Chance Galante 105
Mauser Lopez 102
Savannah Wolff 100
Marshal Fortson 85
Sundae Reed 80
Jackie Pilarski 70
Jake Pilarski 70
Remedy Pilarski 70
Abby Lavin 60
Charlie Mortensen 50
Ginger Suh Quimby 50
Angel Warner 30
Desi Scroggins 30
Harley Waterloo 30
Jessica Baud 30
Merlin Kisiel 30
Riley Robinson 30
Buckeye Belle Eaton 25
Ruby Warner 25
Saffron Brandstetter 25
Zoe Brandstetter 25
Harley Giazzon 20
Maggie Smith 20
Mischa Brown 20
Angel Cavella 15
Angel Treglia 15
Crystal No Last Name 15
Little Bear Hain 15
Max Waterloo 15
Chloe Bear Forster 10
Lexi Sutphen 10
Rinti du Plessis 10
Uma Neet-Whitaker 10
Bailey Sandberg 5
Bebe Moroz 5
Ingrid Neet-Whitaker 5
Kanye Parry 5


Because of your generous donations, we will be able to fund another research study with The Broad Institute this year. Our top 13 winners will determine which study we fund, and we’ll announce that soon here on our blog and our website, so please bookmark both.

Thank you for being a part of the 2 Million Dogs’ community.

Puppy Up!


Posted in 2014 Calendar Contest, Fundraiser, Research, Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

New Calendar Totals as of 8:10 PM Aug 8 2013

Posted by Erich Trapp on August 8, 2013

OMG! Who stole the abacus??? OK, how many toes among us?

OMG! Who stole the abacus??? OK, we can do this. How many toes among us?

Hi Everyone!

This will be the last blog on this year’s calendar I post until the winners are announced late Friday. Please don’t wait until the last minute to vote (HERE).

Right now the votes are coming in faster than I can keep up, so please keep up with your competition.

Thank you all again for another terrific calendar contest. Voting ends midnight EDT.


Trooper Collins  2140

Czar Viney           1460

Beta Yadao         1270

Gracie Calvo       945

Molly Su Applegate         868

Bentley Linaberry            867

Yukon Harris       770

Blondie Henley          680

Murphy Morris         640

Kailech Cummins              610

Pugsley Granberry          600

Maggie Snow-Cormier      585

Calamity Jane Rockwell       565

Gracie Martin    550

Kyle Golz             510

Roscoe Behrle                   510

Sheba Marie Pyle             450

Jigsaw Allgood             395

Eva Dupre           375

Sunny Osborne      340

Annie Graffunder        320

Shadow Wade                   272

Merlin Miltner   225

Leela Decker      220

Guinnes Litt        185

Nestle Epstein   185

Joey Hanson      155

Jake Turner        145

Mogli DeWald    120

Murphy Hansen       120

Chance Galante              105

Savannah Wolff               100

Mauser Lopez   87

Sundae Reed     80

Jackie Pilarski     70

Jake Pilarski        70

Remedy Pilarski         70

Abby Lavin          60

Charlie Mortensen          50

Ginger Suh Quimby         50

Angel Warner          30

Desi Scroggins        30

Harley Waterloo               30

Jessica Baud       30

Merlin Kisiel       30

Riley Robinson  30

Buckeye Belle Eaton       25

Ruby Warner     25

Saffron Brandstetter      25

Zoe Brandstetter      25

Harley Giazzon  20

Maggie Smith    20

Marshal Fortson         20

Mischa Brown   20

Angel Cavella     15

Angel Treglia      15

Crystal No Last Name     15

Little Bear Hain                  15

Chloe Bear Forster          10

Lexi Sutphen      10

Rinti du Plessis  10

Uma Neet-Whitaker       10

Bailey Sandberg        5

Bebe Moroz       5

Ingrid Neet-Whitaker     5

Kanye Parry        5

Max Waterloo   5

Posted in 2014 Calendar Contest, Fundraiser, Research, Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Totals, They Are A Changin’.

Posted by Erich Trapp on July 29, 2013

Every toe counts when you're doing addition.

Every toe counts when you’re doing addition.

2014 Calendar Totals as of July 29 2013 8:30 AM CDT

We’ve had a few new comers to the top 13 contestants. And lots of dogs are neck-and-neck or tied. Keep track of your favorite dogs because things change pretty fast as we get closer to the end of voting. Remember, you have until August 8th at midnight EDT to get your pupper in the running or keep him or her there. And it’s always the last few days of the contest when the competition gets heated and things get really interesting.

Vote HERE.

Need a few ideas to help get more votes? Check out our last blog for some great tips.

We’ll keep counting if you’ll keep voting!

Czar Viney       1270

Trooper Collins       725

Kailech Cummins       470

Molly Su Applegate       430

Yukon Harris       385

Calamity Jane Rockwell       370

Kyle Golz       310

Beta Yadao       300

Gracie Martin       295

Pugsley Granberry       290

Gracie Calvo       265

Maggie Snow-Cormier       260

Merlin Miltner       205

Murphy Morris       195

Guinnes Litt       185

Roscoe Behrle       175

Bentley Linaberry       165

Annie Graffunder       145

Blondie Henley       145

Nestle Epstein       140

Shadow Wade       137

Jigsaw Allgood       115

Eva Dupre        110

Mogli DeWald       80

Jackie Pilarski       70

Jake Pilarski       70

Mauser Lopez       67

Abby Lavin       55

Sunny Osborne       55

Charlie Mortensen       50

Ginger Suh Quimby       50

Remedy Pilarski        50

Leela Decker       50

Murphy Hansen        45

Savannah Wolff             45

Sheba Marie Pyle       45

Sundae Reed       45

Jessica Baud       30

Desi Scroggins       30

Merlin Kisiel       30

Buckeye Belle Eaton       25

Harley Waterloo       25

Saffron Brandstetter       25

Zoe Brandstetter       25

Marshal Fortson       20

Jake Turner       20

Maggie Smith       20

Angel Treglia       15

Crystal No Last Name        15

Lexi Sutphen       10

Riley Robinson       10

Rinti du Plessis       10

Uma Neet-Whitaker       10

Ingrid Neet-Whitaker       5

Max Waterloo       5

Angel Cavella       5

Angel Warner       5

Bailey Sandberg            5

Bebe Moroz       5

Chance Galante       5

Chloe Bear Forster       5

Harley Giazzon       5

Kanye Parry       5

Ruby Warner       5

Mischa Brown       0

Posted in 2014 Calendar Contest, Fundraiser, Research, Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Eight Ways to Get More Votes in our “Cancer Can’t Keep a Good Dog Down” Calendar Contest

Posted by Erich Trapp on July 25, 2013


“Now, let’s see. Charlie is dark green, Blondie is yellow, Desi is purple, Sundae is turquoise … no wait — Nestle is purple and Saffron is yellow… no, that’s not right either. Oh bother! There has to be an easier way to count these votes.”

(by Teri Mo)

Twice now, 2 Million Dogs has posted the running totals in our “Cancer Can’t Keep a Good Dog Down” Calendar Contest.

If you haven’t heard of the contest, it’s Luke Robinson’s fun little brainchild. Once a year, we ask people whose dogs currently have cancer or dog owners who have lost a dog to cancer to send us their dogs’ stories and photos.

We compile the stories and let the public decide which pups will be in next year’s 2 Million Dogs’ calendar. The public votes HERE, and the proceeds support comparative oncology (cancer) research.

It’s still early in the contest, and a few of our pups — our sweet, big-eyed, adorable pups — have no votes yet. (Cue crowd going “Awwwwwww.”)

But don’t worry — there’s plenty of time to get votes! Here’s how to boost those numbers:

  • When we feature your favorite dog on our 2 Million Dogs’ Facebook page, share it on your Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest accounts, and use the words “vote and share!” Nothing helps you make your case like big, irresistible puppy-dog eyes.
  • Host a Puppy Up! Blitz on your lunch hour and invite your co-workers. Pick a dog for each co-worker. Whoever raises the most money for their dog by the end of the lunch break gets a box of fresh doughnuts the next morning.
  • Ask your co-workers to participate in a Give Up Your Daily Drink (soda or coffee) For Cancer Day. Everyone gives up his or her daily latte or soda, and the right to complain about it is “bought” by voting for your favorite pup with the money you didn’t spend on an Iced Calorie Bomb with three pumps of vanilla.
  • Not a social media person? E-mail friends and family asking each for $10.00 worth of votes for your pup. Avoid caps lock (SHOUTING), and keep the body of your e-mail short and sweet. (Feel free to use anything we’ve written here when explaining the contest.)
  • Write a silly or sweet song about your experience with your dog’s cancer, and post it on YouTube with the link to your dog’s calendar contest fundraising page. This is guaranteed to boost those numbers.
  • If your dog isn’t a contestant, pick your favorite underdog and dare all your friends to do their good deed for the day by bombarding that page with votes.
  • Tell your family and friends that the votes are a birthday gift to you. Tell them the only thing you want for your birthday is votes for your pup.
  • If your neighbors have dogs or they just miss your pup, get their e-mail addresses and share the contest with them.

This is all going to a good cause, so everyone wins. Save the puppies, save the people! Puppy up!

(Teri Mo is our resident social media guru.)

Posted in 2014 Calendar Contest, Fundraiser, Research, Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Where Are My People? Why Aren’t They Voting For Me?

Posted by Erich Trapp on July 24, 2013

Some of my friends have no votes. Won't you remember them?

Some of my friends have no votes. Won’t you remember them?

Today’s Totals, July 24, 2013 — around 10:30 AM CDT


When the Man waked up he said, “What is Wild Dog doing here?” And the Woman said, “His name is not Wild Dog anymore, but the First Friend, because he will be our friend for always and always and always.” — Rudyard Kipling


Looking at all the zeros and low numbers on the latest tally, one would think some of these dogs were orphans. Such beautiful faces should not be forgotten.

Please share our video with family and friends. Let’s not leave anyone behind.


Czar Viney       1225

Trooper Collins       625

Yukon Harris       385

C. J. Rockwell       370

Kailech Cummins       315

Molly Su Applegate       305

Beta Yadao       300

Gracie Martin       270

Gracie Calvo       265

Kyle Golz       215

Merlin Miltner       205

Murphy Morris       195

Pugsley Granberry       190

Maggie Snow-Cormier       160

Annie Graffunder       145

Bentley Linaberry       145

Shadow Wade       137

Guinnes Litt       135

Jigsaw Allgood       115

Eva Dupre       110

Roscoe Behrle       85

Mogli DeWald       80

Jackie Pilarski       70

Jake Pilarski       70

Mauser Lopez       67

Abby Lavin       55

Sunny Osborne       55

Charlie Mortensen       50

Ginger Suh Quimby       50

Nestle Epstein       50

Remedy Pilarski       50

Blondie Henley       45

Murphy Hansen       45

Savannah Wolff       45

Sheba Marie Pyle       45

Sundae Reed       45

 Jessica Baud       30

Desi Scroggins       30

Merlin Kisiel       30

Buckeye Belle Eaton       25

Harley Waterloo       25

Saffron Brandstetter       25

Zoe Brandstetter       25

Marshal Fortson       20

Angel Treglia       15

Crystal No Last Name       15

Jake Turner       10

Lexi Sutphen       10

Riley Robinson       10

Rinti du Plessis       10

Uma Neet-Whitaker       10

Ingrid Neet-Whitaker       5

Max Waterloo       5

Angel Cavella       0

Angel Warner       0

Bailey Sandberg       0

Bebe Moroz       0

Chance Galante       0

Chloe Bear Forster       0

Harley Giazzon       0

Kanye Parry       0

Maggie Smith       0

Ruby Warner       0

Posted in 2014 Calendar Contest, Fundraiser, Research, Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

More Ways to Help

Posted by Erich Trapp on July 23, 2013

broad boxerOur “Cancer Can’t Keep a Good Dog Down” 2014 calendar is in full swing, so stop by and vote for your favorite canine cancer heroes. Your voting dollars will go to The Broad Institute again this year, and we want to raise as much as we can to further their work. Their research is international and encompasses canine cancer exploration at the DNA level. Last year the calendar contest winners chose to fund Broad’s Canine Osteosarcoma study. This year’s winners will have the same opportunity to choose which study to support.

And the work Broad does is translational*, which means it helps in human cancer research as well.

Some Background — Since the Human Genome Mapping Project began, $3 billion has been spent over 15 years to generate a reliable sequence of the human genome. Sequence of the canine genome was generated in 2004, taking only about a year to finish and costing about $50 million. (Source.)

Throughout this period of intense research, an important fact has emerged. People and dogs are extraordinarily similar in a genetic sense. But while it takes thousands of human patients with cancer to identify risk factors, it only takes maybe 100 canine patients to identify these factors in dogs. This is because their genetic makeup is not as ‘noisy’ as that of humans. As such, researchers can look at the genetics of cancer in dogs to accelerate discoveries that will benefit both dogs and people.

As you probably already know, the statistics on cancer in dogs are alarming, and in fact, the current rate of cancer is higher in dogs than it is in humans.

But did you know that dogs are:

  • Twice as likely to develop leukemia than humans.
  • Four times more likely to suffer from breast cancer.
  • Eight times more likely to develop bone cancer.
  • An incredible thirty-five times more at risk for developing skin cancer. (Source.)

So, besides voting in the calendar contest to support the work of Broad, how can you help further the research they’re doing the rest of the year?

Broad needs DNA samples from purebred dogs who have been diagnosed with the cancers Broad is studying, as well as from older, healthy dogs (ages 8+ years) from the same breeds. Currently those cancers are: Hemangiosarcoma, Osteosarcoma (bone cancer), Lymphoma, Mast Cell Tumors, Mammary Tumors, Melanoma (skin cancer), and Glioma (tumors that start in the brain or spine).

Why are DNA samples important? At its deepest root, cancer is caused by damage to the DNA. DNA is found in every cell and is responsible for directing cells in normal behavior patterns. Under normal circumstances, the body is able to repair DNA damage, but when that damage isn’t repaired, the cells begin to behave abnormally, beginning the out-of-control growth that leads to cancer formation. (Source.)

Why purebred dogs? In developing breeds, certain physical features (size, shape, coat, color) and behaviors were selected by breeders. This genetic diversity makes purebreds dogs ideal for genetic research. Using samples from only purebred dogs ensures the fastest progress for all dogs.

If your purebred dog has had cancer or is an older, healthy dogs (age 8+) please visit www.broadinstitute.org/dogsamples where you’ll find information to guide you on working with your vet to collect and ship blood samples to use in their studies.

To learn more about the breeds they study and the work your votes will be funding, please follow this link: www.broadinstitute.org/dogresearch.

Broad Institute on blackBroad’s Ethical Statement: The Broad Institute’s Canine Disease Mapping group performs disease research under a conservative ethical model that no harm should come to the dogs. Dogs enrolled in their studies are pet dogs, participating after owner consent, only in ways that do not harm them. They DO NOT induce cancer in dogs, nor do they ever keep any animals in the laboratory.

Thank you for supporting the efforts of 2 Million Dogs and The Broad Institute through your participation in the 2014 “Cancer Can’t Keep a Good Dog Down” calendar. Don’t forget to cast your votes for your favorite dogs before voting ends at midnight, EDT, August 8th.

*Translational research is research in the laboratory with an eye toward learning things that could be brought back to patients (both animal and human) in the clinical setting.

Posted in 2014 Calendar Contest, Fundraiser, Research, Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Reggie Duman and His Tumexal Treatment

Posted by Erich Trapp on June 30, 2013

Beth Duman recently sent us this story about her Belgian Tervuren and an alternative treatment he is receiving for his osteosarcoma. It’s called Tumexal.

Disclaimer: Please remember, we post this and information like this to inform our readers of potential new/different/alternative treatments for their beloved companions. 2 Million Dogs does not endorse any particular treatment, protocol, therapy, veterinarian, and/or drug. It is up to each individual to do his or her own research and then act accordingly on the information they are able to gather. But we wanted to share with you the success Beth is having with this particular treatment for this particular dog and his disease. Here is what she shared with us.

Beautiful Reggie.

Beautiful Reggie.

This beautiful boy, Reggie, is a nine-year-old gorgeous Belgian Tervuren. About four months ago, he started gimping on his left front foot. We have some very good vets on our community so I visited three of them a number of times. Two of the vets are skilled in alternative medicine so Reggie received chiropractic treatments, electro-chiropractic treatments, Chinese herbs, acupuncture, pain  and anti-inflammatory medications. I also worked with a wonderful Tellington Touch practitioner and message therapist.

Reggie continued to get worse until he was in pain that was causing him to occasionally scream and making it hard for him to sleep without constantly readjusting himself because of his discomfort. We increased his pain meds. He was only going outside to relieve himself and could no longer use the doorway that involved walking down two steps to get outside.

Finally after months of his physical and mental deterioration, one of the chiropractor vets was able to feel a tumor under his left scapula. The vet was not certain that the tumor was operable  so I immediately made an appointment with the vet who was the most skilled surgeon. She did a number of X-rays and attempted to aspirate the tumor. The X-rays showed a mass 77 mm in size in an area that was not easily accessed. She had the long hard conversation with me about  possible options for Reggie. If she were to amputate his leg, she would also need to remove the shoulder. Amputation would serve to lesson his pain but, no doubt, the cancer would have already metastasized to his lungs. Chemotherapy  might add a couple months to his life, as might radiation. I asked her what she would do if he were her dog with a similar prognosis. She said pain management would be her choice. I agreed.

When I got home, I looked up a cancer researcher’s contact information. I had stumbled on Dr. Nice’s web site some months before – when my dogs were all healthy. He had sent me a Power Point presentation about his cancer intervention protocol. I immediately called Dr. Nice and arranged to have treatment sent for Reggie.

For the last month, Reggie has been taking three specially prepared capsules along with a couple of milliliters of a liquid to help him absorb the capsules. Twice a day, I rub in a cream version of the treatment on his shaved chest at the tumor site.

One month later, Reggie’s tumor has shrunk to 50 mm. He is off all pain medications and is happy and active. He has a slight limp but easily walks and trots. He’s now soliciting play from our other dogs and back to being my active friendly buddy.

He will be following Dr. Nice’s protocol for two more months. I have been in contact with Dr. Nice about Reggie’s progress and has shared that other dogs are seeing similar results. The treatment is called Tumexal. Dr. Nice’s web site is www.CanineCare.us.

I hope this information will be beneficial to others who are dealing with choosing treatment  options for their dogs. It has certainly been a blessing to us and Reggie.


Beth Duman, VSPDT, CPDT-KA

Beth Duman is a biologist and positive dog trainer in Michigan. Her highly rated training book, The Evolution of Charlie Darwin: Partner With Your Dog Using Positive Training, can be purchased at Amazon.com.

Posted in Research, Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments »

Orchard School 4th Grade Business Project Donates Generously to 2 Million Dogs

Posted by Erich Trapp on March 5, 2013


Luke, Indy, Carly, and Hudson.

Recently, 2 Million Dogs received word that a generous donation was made to our Foundation, thanks to the efforts of Carly Levinsohn and the heartfelt appeal she made to her fellow classmates in a 4th grade business project at Orchard School in Indianapolis, Indiana. Below is her letter to her classmates, and a letter to us. Thank you Carly and everyone who contributed so thoughtfully to our organization on behalf of dogs with cancer.

We applaud the efforts of this young generation, and the hard work that went in to supporting a cause they believe in. Thank you.




Carly presenting a check to Luke Robinson, founder of 2 Million Dogs.

Posted in Fundraiser, Research, Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Us In A Nutshell — Thanks, Chicago Tribune

Posted by Erich Trapp on October 11, 2012

Up Close and Personal — Melisa Kottmeier makes friends with Indy, one of two Great Pyrenees dogs owned by Luke Robinson, founder of the 2 Million Dogs organization, who spoke to dog owners at FYDO Land in Elgin about links between human and pet cancer. (photo by Darrell Goemaat)

The Chicago Tribune recently covered the story of 2 Million Dogs and did such a great job, we’d like to share it here in case you missed it.

“It’s [the article] not just about 2 Million Dogs.” says Executive Director Ginger Morgan, “It’s about how people live with cancer every day. By sharing this article you could be helping someone realize that they are not alone in their fight.”

The article was written by Amanda Marrazzo, Special to the Tribune. Photo credit is Darrell Goemaat, with the Chicago Tribune.

If you’d like to keep up with the work of 2 Million Dogs, you can set Google to do a Google Alert. How? Follow this link for simple directions.

Now, here’s the Chicago Tribune article …
October 10, 2012

When his beloved Great Pyrenees dog Malcolm died from bone cancer in 2004, Luke Robinson was sad and angry.

Adding to his loss: Nobody could tell him why.

“I didn’t even know dogs could get cancer,” Robinson said.

Beginning in 2008, Robinson and two of his other dogs, Murphy and Hudson, walked from his home in Texas to Boston to raise awareness about cancer in pets and links to human cancers as well. With stops and starts along the way, and Robinson and the dogs camping or staying with host families, the journey lasted more than two years.

“Somewhere on the cross-country walk I had this dream, this vision of taking the two dogs, walking 2,000 miles and making that into 2 million dogs,” he said.

And so his life’s mission was conceived. After the walk ended, the not-for-profit 2 Million Dogs was founded with the hope that eventually that number of canines and their owners will participate in walks to raise awareness and money to fund research to eradicate cancer from pets and people.

Humans share no direct genetic link with dogs, yet each dies from the same types of cancers in astronomical numbers, he said.

Sadly, Murphy was diagnosed with nasal cancer less than a month after arriving in Boston. He died a year and three days later.

Losing Murphy further strengthened his resolve.

“I think dogs are the canary in the coal mine,” he said. “I think that they hold the answer. They drink the same water we do, are exposed to the same air, environmental toxins. I can’t help to think since we don’t share a genetic link, there must be something in the environment.

“All the cancers we get, they are getting too,” he said. “And that is strange. … We share no evolutionary line with dogs. We don’t come from dogs and dogs don’t come from us.”

Robinson recently visited the Chicago area with Hudson and Indy, his newest “fuzzybutt,” on what he named the “Summer of Murphy Tour,” a cross-country journey in his van that he began in September.

He visited with local veterinary oncologists and met with dog lovers in Elgin and Schaumburg.

Robin Massey, owner of FYDO Land, dog day cares in Elgin and Huntley, said she was so moved by the mission at an event she attended last summer she became a co-chair of the local group.

“Unfortunately, being in the business I’m in, I have lost a lot of four-legged friends to cancer,” she said. “It’s not only about fighting cancer in canines, but about fighting cancer in everybody. It’s an all inclusive group.”

Since 2010, through events called Puppy-Up walks, 2 Million Dogs has raised $270,000, said Karyn Vasquez, a dog lover and member of the board of directors of the organization. About a third of the money goes to research, with the rest going toward education and awareness.

“For me, just letting people know that our companion animals really do get cancer is a huge step in the right direction,” said Vasquez, who lost her own dog, Chelios, to lymphoma on New Year’s Day 2010.

Last year the organization presented a $50,000 grant to Princeton University to fund the school’s study of canine mammary tumor development and progression.

“Mammary tumors are the most common tumors in intact female dogs,” she said. “In humans, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women. Mammary tumors in dogs and breast cancer in women have many similarities, both in terms of risk factors and biology.”

Interest in the mission has grown.

In 2010 there were Puppy-Up walks in 12 cities across the United States. In 2011, there were walks in 27 cities, and this year there are about 32. So far, about 3,000 dogs and their owners have participated, said Ginger Morgan, executive director of 2 Million Dogs.

“We are still looking for many dogs and their owners to help us in our fight against cancer,” Morgan said, encouraging owners to bring their dogs to a Nov. 3 walk in West Dundee.

“When we hit 2 million dogs, we will still continue walking. We’ll walk until we find a cure, until we can find out what is causing cancer and how we can prevent it.”

Heather Neal, of Aurora, like Robinson, also believes that cancers, as well as other ailments, in both humans and canines are caused by the environment we live in, the food we eat, the water we drink and the air we breathe.

She owns Cadence, an 8-year-old standard poodle, who last year received treatment for osteosarcoma, a malignant bone cancer. After undergoing chemotherapy, the amputation of her right back leg, a switch to a raw food diet and a daily cocktail of herbal supplements, Cadence is doing much better and today is cancer-free.

“She is vibrant, full of life, energetic,” Neal said. “Being on three legs has not stopped her at all. She is like a tornado.”

Neal believes humans have a spiritual connection with their dogs, and that dogs are the key to unlocking the mysteries of cancer.

“They are more than just pets to us; they are a family member,” she said. “Let’s do what we can to cure (cancer). It will be good for dogs and human beings.”

Dr. Tiffany Leach, a veterinary oncologist who works at Specialty Vets in Buffalo Grove, said there are cancers that behave the same in humans and dogs, and there are also treatments that work on both human and dog cancers.

For example, sarcomas behave the same in children as they do in dogs, and there are medicines that can be used to treat both, Leach said.

“Vet oncology is so important to us because we can take a lot of the human cancers and get information to use for dog cancers,” she said.

As a resident at Purdue University she worked on a study of bladder cancer. It was found that the same treatments used for human bladder cancer were effective when used to treat bladder cancer in dogs.

It’s also been proved that pediatric osteosarcoma, or bone cancer, displays the same behaviors in children and dogs. And doctors are able to use the same treatments as veterinarians in treating it.

Leach also believes environmental factors play a role in canine and human cancers. But she also believes certain breeds tend to be prone to specific cancers. For example, she said, a Bernese mountain dog is prone to histiocytic sarcoma, an aggressive cancer that begins in the muscle tissue.

Leach herself knows firsthand the pain of dealing with cancer on more than one level. Her grandfather suffered with prostate cancer, which first led her to studying oncology along with veterinary medicine.

In 2005, she was diagnosed with renal cell carcinoma, or kidney cancer. Though she declined to go into detail about her health, she has gone through treatments and at least two surgeries, and simply said, “I’m handling it. I’m still able to go to work and lead a pretty normal life.”

Then there are her two beloved Irish wolfhounds, which each have dealt with their own cancers. Gideon, 6, had a soft-tissue sarcoma. The dog has had surgeries and radiation and is in remission. Jiggs, 9, was diagnosed with chondrosarcoma, a type of a bone cartilage tumor. Jiggs underwent surgery two months ago and seems to be in remission, she said.

All of these situations have confirmed that the profession she has chosen as her life’s work is exactly where she should be. She knows the struggles of cancer. She knows the heartache of a pet having a life-threatening disease. So when sitting with a pet owner and telling them their pet has cancer, she can honestly say she knows how they feel.

“You can at least genuinely say, ‘I’ve been through this and I understand,’ and you can really mean it on a level I couldn’t have had,” she said. “I’ve been lucky in that respect. I’m an undying optimist. I like to take the positive out of all of this.”

Robinson, meanwhile, is off to another city. His message is for all people, those with and without pets, and those who have or have not been affected by cancer.

“We are facing nature’s perfect enemy,” Robinson said. “No man, woman, child or companion animal is spared its killing field.”

A 2 Million Dog Puppy-Up will be held Nov. 3, at Randall Oaks Park, 1180 N. Randall Road, West Dundee. Registration is 10 a.m., opening ceremonies at 11:15 a.m., and a two-mile walk steps off at 11:30 a.m. Closing ceremonies will be at 12:30 p.m.

Preregistration by Nov. 1 is $20 per person (under the age of 14 is free). Day of walk registration is $25 per person. No limit on the number of dogs.

Dogs must be up to date on vaccinations and must not be on a retractable leash.

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Thank You, Orchard Park School Students!

Posted by Erich Trapp on October 5, 2012

Luke with student Carley Levinsohn presenting a check for over $400.00 to 2 Million Dogs. (Photo by Make Corbin of WIBC)

As reported by Mike Corbin with WIBC, 93.1FM,  some enterprising Indiana grade schoolers led by one young lady are doing their bit for cancer research.

Students at Orchard Park School in Indianapolis, Indiana donated the $400 they raised to 2 Million Dogs Thursday.

Fifth-grader Carly Levinsohn heard about the group. She was on hand to present the check to Robinson and his dogs Indiana and Hudson outside the school (pictured).

As part of a class assignment to build a business, Carly and other students in her class chose to donate their profits to the group. Carly says she hopes the money helps researchers cure cancer in dogs and people. Robinson says the donation is important because it will help toward that end. He adds that raising awareness is also crucial. Robinson says many people don’t know that pets can also get brain, breast and other types of cancers and that the disease has a similar physiological makeup in dogs as in humans.


Thank you Carly and all the kids who Puppied Up! and made the donation happen.

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