Every Dog Matters – Meet Hero #2060
Morris Animal Foundation appreciates the commitment made by our study participants, and we want to honor and recognize that commitment. Each month, we’ll share their stories and learn about the families and veterinarians who care for them. This month, meet Max, Hero #2060.
When we caught up with Cathi Isza, her dog Max, Hero #2060, was barking in the background, providing a fitting sound track for our interview. “Max is something else,” said Cathi. “Max has a sister, supporter Zoe, who also is a pistol!” Cathi certainly has her hands full with these two bundles of energy.
Cathi lives with her mother in Indiana, and Max and Zoe. Fate had a hand in bringing Max and Cathi together; Cathi dialed his breeder by accident! One thing led to another, and Cathi brought Max to his new home on a cold February day. Although he was too young to enroll in the Golden Retriever Lifetime Study, Cathi was determined to participate as soon as Max was old enough to join.
Cathi’s experiences with cancer in both humans and dogs was a major reason for her to join the study. Her human family has been affected by cancer, and she lost two Labrador retrievers to the disease as well. Cathi knew that golden retrievers have a high incidence of cancer and she’s hopeful that the study can shed some light on the risk factors associated with cancer development, and that it will not only improve dogs’ lives, but help people, too.
Since Max enrolled, Cathi has been spreading the word about both the study and Morris Animal Foundation throughout her town, as well as through her work with the study volunteer team.
“I tell everyone I can about the study,” said Cathi. “I’m a pure Golden Retriever Lifetime Study person. Anybody who stops us when walking, I tell them about the Foundation. This past September, I set up a table at our city’s First Friday activity titled ‘The Dog Days of Summer,’ and I had materials about the study and the Foundation. I had so much fun talking about the Foundation. It was really wonderful!”
When we asked Cathi what she finds the most challenging about being a study participant, it was no surprise that she remarked on the difficulty answering all the questions on the questionnaire. Cathi confessed that “sometimes I’m a little embarrassed to tell you what Max has eaten!” However, Cathi’s advice to other owners of study participants is to not be worried about being embarrassed, since the information is vital to the study’s integrity.
Thank you, Cathi, Max and Zoe, for your commitment to the study. Every participant in the Morris Animal Foundation Golden Retriever Lifetime Study, human and dog, matters!