Golden retrievers that could help save other dogs from cancer - CBS46 News

Golden retrievers that could help save other dogs from cancer

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(Source: WGCL) (Source: WGCL)

On National Pet Day, we introduce you to two golden retrievers that could help save other dogs from cancer. They are part of the most extensive study ever conducted in veterinary medicine.

There are more than 3,000 golden retrievers across the country taking part in this 10-year study. Dog numbers 138 and 2,690 live right here in Atlanta. 

Annie -- Dog 138 -- is one of the first in the study. Barbara Selkirk considers her much more than a pet.

“I don’t have children so she is my baby,” said Selkirk.

Golden retrievers are one of the most popular dog breeds in America, but they also rate high on another scale, as about 60 percent get cancer.

Perry McIntyre knows that all too well. 

“He has moments when he is sort of the center of my life too,” said McIntyre.

He enrolled his puppy in the study after losing a golden retriever to cancer.

“You are grateful for every day you have with them,” said McIntyre.

Mac – Dog 2,690 – is an award-winning show dog, and with 10 litters, he’s a father to many.  

Mac and Annie's owners track everything about them. They hope the massive amount of data collected will help canine cancer researchers.

The lifetime study by the Morris Animal Foundation also includes frequent vet visits, where hair, blood, and even nail clippings are collected.

Once complete, the lifetime data will go into a computer to identify cancer risk factors -- things like foods or genetics.

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