Every Dog Matters — Hero Dog #2450
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 Chewbacca, Hero Dog #2450.
While walking by the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, Molly Tuchman and her husband, David, crossed paths with a golden retriever and its owner, and learned about the Morris Animal Foundation Golden Retriever Lifetime Study. Molly’s curiosity was piqued, and when she returned home she did some research about the foundation.
Curiosity led to action, and Molly committed to helping the study in any way she could. “I was impressed and intrigued by the scope and scale of the foundation’s work and research,” said Molly, “it was a no-brainer.”
“I was three months pregnant when I had the ‘brilliant’ idea to get a golden puppy,” said Molly. ”I love the golden retriever temperament and their reputation as family dogs.”
It was then that the new puppy joined the family, joining their rescue shepherd mix and two cats. Passionate fans of the Star Wars movies, Molly and her husband named their new dog Chewbacca. After losing one of their cats to cancer, a new kitten was soon adopted and, thanks to 3-year-old-son Phineas, was named Darth Vader Kitty.
“The Star Wars theme has no immediate end in our house,” said Molly. “And this was a few years before the frenzy of Star Wars Episode 7.”
Chewbacca turned out to be the wildest member of the family.
“He is our frenetic ball of positive energy, and we love him,” said Molly. “But simultaneously [he is] the sweetest dog I’ve ever met, and insists on being as close to us as possible.”
Even a trip to the veterinarian causes a scene, often requiring reinforcements when blood samples are needed. “It’s not because he’s upset, he just tries really hard to kiss everyone.”
Molly finds that the extensive questionnaire that is a part of the annual study exam has made her more aware of the health choices she makes for all her “frenzied fur babies.”
“It’s easier to recognize trends and poor habits when you are forced to really look at diet, exercise, etc.,” said Molly. “Being able to stay on top of any potential changes in health for Chewbacca by continuing the study is a huge draw for us.”
Thank you, Molly, David, Phineas, Connie and Chewbacca, for your commitment to the study. Every participant in the Morris Animal Foundation Golden Retriever Lifetime Study, human and dog, matters!