Heart-Warming Documentary Sheds Light On Canine Lymphoma

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Nothing strikes fear in the heart of a pet parent more than learning their little guy has cancer. I’ve been there. I’ve heard those dreaded words and received the gentle advice that, even with expensive surgeries, the disease would inevitably return. Of course I fought on behalf of my pet and hoped in the same way I do when buying a lottery ticket – with a knowledge that the odds aren’t in my favor but I can always dream.

The truth is that like so many of the human forms of cancer, advancements are made every day and when it comes to the most common form of canine cancer, lymphoma, there is in fact reason for pet parents to have hope.

Related: What You Need To Know About Lymphoma In Dogs

This hope as well as the highs and lows of the battle to survive are captured in the ground-breaking documentary, “My Friend: Changing the Journey.” Due to be released on YouTube November 1st, the film follows three inspiring dogs that fought and in some instances, won the war against lymphoma. Their stories are told through their pet parents, veterinary oncologists, and canine care professionals and while the subject matter could be considered heart-breaking, the message is certainly optimistic.

For instance, did you know that this form of cancer is highly responsive to therapy, yet only three percent of owners move forward with treatment? Costs might be a factor, but I suspect that as caregivers we’re also cognizant of “quality of life” and may feel we don’t want to put our beloveds through grueling sessions of chemotherapy. Most pet parents may not realize that statistically 75-80 percent of dogs being treated with chemo have none of the side effects experienced by their human counterparts. And certainly none of the angst that comes with dealing with a potentially terminal illness.

Related: Revolutionary New Blood Test Helps Diagnose Canine Cancer

Executive produced by Terry Simons, former Animal Planet commentator and author of “Ralph’s First Day of School,” an interactive dog training book for children, confirms the documentary’s goal is to raise awareness of the disease which is diagnosed in an estimated 300,000 dogs each year in the United States alone. A cause close to his heart, Simons established CLEAR (Canine Lymphoma Education Awareness and Research), a 501 (c)(3) canine cancer foundation in 2012, after experiencing the disease first hand with his heart and soul dog, Reveille.

My Friend: Changing the Journey delivers on its promise to provide valuable information on oncology, treatment options, nutrition, holistic approaches, prevention and remarkable advancements in the fight against the disease. Simons’ take-away message to all pet parents facing this disease is simple: canine lymphoma does not have to be a death sentence!

If you’d like to help CLEAR, you’re invited to the 3rd annual Viva Dog Vegas fundraiser on November 7, 2015 in Glendale, CA. Your $75 ticket includes $25 in gambling chips, vegetarian hor ‘doeuvres, live musical entertainment and a strolling magic show. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit clearcaninecancer.com.

And don’t forget to watch the trailer for My Friend: Changing the Journey. We’ve posted the video below.

My Friend: Changing the Journey Trailer 1 from My Friend: Changing the Journey on Vimeo.