2 Million Dogs – The Blog

Cancer. Touches. Everyone.

Posts Tagged ‘Malcolm’

“Cancer collaboration could someday help dogs and their humans”

Posted by Erich Trapp on May 9, 2012

When being treated for cancer, Jessy, Troyanskaya’s dog, brought the Princeton researcher and Sorenmo together, launching their ongoing research collaboration. (Photo copyright by Olga Troyanskaya)

“Cancer collaboration could someday help dogs and their humans”

An extensive article from Princeton University on collaborative work in comparative oncology. 2 Million Dogs’ recent contribution to Princeton’s work has helped further this critical research.

Thanks to all our supporters and sponsors whose continued support make contributions like this possible. Through work like this, we’re closer to finding the causes of cancer in companion animals and people.

From the article posted May 7, 2012 by Catherine Zandonella: “Through the work funded by 2 Million Dogs, Troyanskaya and her team hope to find gene expression patterns that govern the transformation of a tumor from a benign to malignant state, contribute to tumor growth and govern metastasis. The investigators anticipate that their studies will be a starting point for developing diagnostic methods that veterinarians and doctors can use to predict whether a newly discovered tumor will grow slowly or rapidly. They also hope to identify novel pathways that could serve as targets of new drugs to treat cancer.”

To read the entire article and see how your contributions are supporting this valuable research, please click on this link.

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Savage Mountain

Posted by Erich Trapp on January 11, 2012

Luke Robinson and Ginger Morgan present a check to Princeton University for the The Canine Mammary Tumor Program.

by Luke Robinson

[Wednesday, January 11, 2012]  Six years ago to this day, I lost my boy Malcolm to metastatic cancer and on this anniversary, it is with tremendous honor I announce the funding of The 2 Million Dogs Foundation‘s first research initiative: A breast cancer study benefiting both humans and canines.

The 2 Million Dogs Foundation presented a check for $50,000 to Princeton University today to help fund the school’s Molecular Study of Canine Mammary Tumor Development and Progression: From Genome To Clinical Outcome.

Mammary tumors are the most common tumors in intact female dogs, and in humans, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women – approximately one in eight women develop breast cancer during their lifetime. Mammary tumors in dogs and breast cancer in women have many similarities, both in terms of risk factors and biology.

The 2 Million Dogs Foundation chose this study for the following reasons:

First and foremost, it’s translational in that people stand to significantly benefit as well as our canine companions.

Second, it’s collaborative. The Canine Mammary Tumor Program  began at The University of Pennsylvania with Dr. Karin Sorenmo whom we met while walking through Philadelphia. Collaboration, we feel, is key if we plan to make significant strides in cancer research.

Third, the tissue samples were collected from shelter dogs diagnosed with breast cancer, and they were all treated, at no expense, by UPenn as part of their program.

And finally, we feel that the approach of this study is novel, not incremental, and could potentially yield critical insights into metastatic breast cancer.

While we have donated $50,000, 2 Million Dogs has pledged to raise an additional $30,000 this year to study more tissue samples.   Click here to help us raise the additional funds needed or contact ginger@2milliondogs.org for other ways you can help.

I owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to the many, many people who made this day possible. My family back in Texas, our supporters, fans, and friends, both new and old, the hundreds of strangers that helped Hudson, Murphy and me get from Austin to Boston safely, the folks at 2 Million Dogs, and to Ginger Morgan, the Executive Director, who has believed in my vision since the day we walked through Memphis.

And finally, to those who had the courage to always believe. God bless you.  Keep the faith and puppy up!


I remember standing atop Savage Mountain, the highest peak on the Rails-Trails from Pittsburgh to DC in August of 2009.  It was a glorious afternoon – a crystalline sky colored in an indescribable blue like the Frio River that cuts through the Texas hill country.  I wrote a poem about Malcolm entitled “Savage Heart” and I thought it incredibly ironic that this mountain was our highest hurdle.

As I sat perched upon a rock, reflecting on our journey, I could see for hundreds of miles.

(Reprinted from http://2dogs2000miles.blogspot.com/2012/01/savage-mountain.html)

To view the video presentation, please click here.

To view the WZBN TV coverage from Princeton, please click here.

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Posted by Erich Trapp on June 25, 2011

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

It is with great sorrow that I must tell you that our dear friend Murphy was given rest Wednesday evening, June 22, 2011 after a year-long battle against cancer.

Murphy was diagnosed with nasal adenocarcinoma only a short time after he, Hudson, and Luke finished their 826 day, 16 state, 2300+ mile journey from Austin, Texas to Boston, Massachusetts in June 2010.

The battle for Murphy is over, and no doubt by now he is reunited with his brother, Malcolm, who also died from cancer, and who was the inspiration for their walk.

But the curse of cancer remains, and it is up to us to redouble our efforts to see that these beautiful animals, and countless others, have not died in vain. 2 Million Dogs continues its efforts, guided by the spirits of all those who have gone before.

If you are new to 2 Million Dogs, you can read their story from the beginning at the 2 dogs 2,000 miles blog here.  Start from the beginning and read through the hundreds of blog posts to see where The Boys traveled, the amazing adventures they had, and all the remarkable people and pups they met.

If you are on Facebook, there are many wonderful tributes to Murphy posted on Luke’s wall  and on Hudson and Murphy’s wall . And please visit YouTube for a photo-tribute to Murphy.

Murphy, only 10, was preceded in death by his brother Malcolm. He is survived by his Papi, Luke, his brother Hudson, his Mommy Ginger, dozens of Mommies and Uncles across the country, and thousands of friends across the globe. Please remember them in your thoughts.

puppy up!

Erich and his 5 Pack

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(2 Million) Dog(s) Tired

Posted by Erich Trapp on November 18, 2010

Our friend Bette Allen, owner of Tiny Growl, sums up her experience organizing the puppy up! Walk in her part of the world. It’s a great post and here’s just a taste. For the rest please follow this link.

Sundy Holland, Bailey and Syd.

It’s been nearly two weeks since my last post.  Other than when I first began blogging, I don’t think I’ve ever been quiet for quite so long.  I do apologize to my loyal readers, but it’s taken me all this time just to feel “normal” again.  The 2 Million Dogs Puppy Up! Walk was Sunday, November 7th and I can honestly say that I’ve never worked harder on anything in my life.  I’ve organized events before, but never for

Bette Allen and the puppy up! Crew from Seattle.

charity and never with a crew of less than a dozen people.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: fundraising ain’t no place for sissies.  You can quote me.  One nice side-effect is that I’ve lost nearly 10 lbs.  I call it the 501(c)3 diet and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone.

Vendors setting up.

The people that came to support Luke’s cause and walked with us on November 7th were there for those that they had lost.  They carried pictures of their dogs, held leashes that once connected them to their boys and girls and carried the memory of that loss with them as they walked.

Thanks to Bette and the folks in Seattle who came out and walked.

And thanks to all our City Leaders who put so much time and effort into such a great cause!

If you’d like to organize a Walk in your city or town for next year, or get People Tags.involved in any of our activities and events, please contact us through our web site.


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Virtual Puppy Up! Walks

Posted by Erich Trapp on November 5, 2010

Many of you have expressed an interest in the Puppy Up! Walks but there is no Walk in your state/city/country this year. The following cities are our first 12:

Norcross, GA
Fort Collins, CO
Auburn, WA
Seattle, WA
New Milford, CT
Boston, MA
Pittsburgh, PA
Edinboro, PA
Newport, KY
Richmond, VA
Fairborn, OH
Poughkeepsie, NY

Even if you’re not near one of these locations you can STILL participate in a Virtual Puppy Up! Walk. While one of our goals is to fund-raise for research, our on-going goal has always been to friend-raise and increase people’s awareness about canine cancer and how similar many of these cancers are to human cancers, and how studying cancers in dogs can help both animals and humans.

2 Million Dogs was formed with the belief that if 2 dogs can walk over 2000 miles to make people aware of canine cancer, 2 million dogs can walk 2 miles with the same goal in mind. Our mission has always been to bring people and their dogs together in solidarity against a disease that affects us all.

So get out and walk on November 7th with your pooch. You don’t need a city near-by to participate. We have people all over the world who will be walking with their friends, their dogs, and their kids on November 7th, just to get the word out. Go to a park. Walk a few times around the block. Walk down the lane. Talk to people. Inform them about the seriousness of canine cancer, how it relates to human cancer, the potential benefits of comparative oncology, and how helping dogs also helps people. Tell them what you’re doing and why. Spread the word. Remember, a Virtual Walk can happen anywhere!

We couldn’t reach everybody this year, but with your help we’ll grow year by year. If you can, sponsor a friend or someone who IS in a city on the list above, or donate in remembrance of a loved one, canine, feline, horse or human. If you’d like to help us raise funds, please buy one (or more) of our 2011 Cancer Can’t Keep a Good Dog Down calendars , or our puppy up! gear, like a puppy up! T-shirt or ball cap or a bandanna for your dog or a bumper sticker for your car. Everything helps. Visit our store – we have lots of goodies to help you start the conversation. Cancer. Touches. EVERYone. It’s not a slogan. It’s a fact. Help us change the odds. Walk with us. Spread the word. One man and his 2 dogs walked over 2300 miles. But it’s a big country and a big world. YOU CAN help!

And while you’re out there, wherever THERE may be (here in the States, Australia, Spain, New Zealand, France, England, Canada, Brazil, Estonia, Germany, Japan, wherEVER), know that you are the first to walk in the inaugural 2 Million Dogs, Puppy Up! Walk! You are making history and helping start a world-wide awareness. And while you’re at it, send us pictures! Tell us who you are, where you’re from, and where you’re walking. We’ll post them on our blog here.

Thanks! We look forward to hearing from you!

Erich Trapp, Bloginator and Secretary for 2 Million Dogs.

For more information on the Walks, please follow this link.

2 Million Dogs is a 501 C (3) organization that relies on the generosity of individuals and corporations to help us in our mission to eradicate cancer through investing in comparative oncology studies.

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Happy Birthday, Malcolm by Luke Robinson

Posted by Erich Trapp on November 2, 2010


Malcolm would’ve been 13 Sunday. I didn’t realize it until now that his birthday comes on the eve of Pet Cancer Awareness Month.

A year or two ago I might have said that was curiously coincidental but I’ve witnessed way too much in my travels and I know otherwise now.

Last night I was fortunate enough to listen to Dr. Steve Withrow‘s talk about his lifelong work in comparative oncology. The title of his presentation tells all, “Some Science. Some Stories. Some True.” It was both enlightening and invigorating, and I hope every one of you has the opportunity to hear him speak some day.

One of the most interesting points he made was that despite breakthroughs in understanding and technological developments, “The dumbest cancer cell is smarter than all of us.” My father, a nephrologist, used to talk to me at length when I was young about the amazing complexity of the human body and the intricacies of its individual yet interconnected systems. A few months back in a blog about Murphy I described cancer as nature’s perfect enemy. It uses that complexity against its victims.

Dr. Withrow also talked about his efforts in convincing the National Institute of Health of the importance of studying cancer in companion pets. In his words, “NIH never questioned the science but the relevance and the ability to extrapolate it into humans.” Comparative oncology or translational studies are not even a rounding error in the billions of dollars spent on cancer research in the U.S. every year.

Public perception is still another problem and one I can speak about personally. While on our cross-country walk I was invited to a number of human cancer rallies and at every one, I was introduced as the ‘Dog Cancer Guy’ or on a few occasions the ‘Dog Cancer Boy’ which made me sound a little like a circus act. Don’t get me wrong; I was grateful for every opportunity we had on the road to share our story, but most of my time at those events was spent on, “Yes, dogs get breast cancer, too, and by working together we may find a common link or a key.”

It’s important this month, Pet Cancer Awareness Month, to keep in mind exactly what we’re up against —  the greatest epidemic facing companion pets, limited government funding for research, and even public perception.

That’s why participating in the 2 Million Dog March this November 7th is so imperative. We’ve got to send a message to the media that this isn’t just an “Aww, puppies” story, and to the general public that the only way to eradicate cancer in both pets and people is through partnership.

We’re not going to get 2 million dogs to walk in the 12 cities this year or any where close to that but it’s the start. You know, when Malcolm’s cancer spread to his lungs he had hard days, and when he struggled, I whispered to him, “We don’t give up, we don’t give in until the end, my friend.” That’s where ‘puppy up’ came from…

I miss you Malcolm. puppy up!

To participate in a puppy up walk near you, please follow this link.

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