Opie is participating in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Dog of the Year Competition because he looks forward to finding the cure! More than 1 million companion dogs are diagnosed with and treated for cancer each year, lymphoma being one of the most common. If anyone really doesn't deserve cancer, it's dogs!! Because humans and dogs are 85% genetically identical, treatments for human blood cancer continue to be modified to treat dogs too! By raising money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, we can get closer to the day that no dog / owner duo has to fear their time together being cut short due to blood cancer.
A bit about Opie: Opie is a four year-old rescue St. Bernard who traveled far and wide from California to Colorado to keep me, his human, company while I battle Leukemia. We have a long journey ahead of us, but Opie has already proven to be the most healing medicine and the best therapist I could hope for. During my two weeks at the University of Colorado Hospital where I received my diagnosis, planned visits from Opie every few days kept me looking ahead bit by bit. Excitement over meeting him outside in the flower garden for a few hours made the down days bearable. He also got to come up to my hospital room and snuggle in my bed for a bit before I was transported from Colorado Springs to Denver, just a day after I received my diagnosis.
Since beginning outpatient treatment, he's been attached to my hip at home. He is my main motivator to get up & out for a walk in the mornings or get a little hike in, which is good for my physical & mental health. He is right next to me when I'm cooking, sitting outside reading, at a coffee shop working, and all night while I'm sleeping. It makes a world of difference to never feel alone and get a big fluffy hug anytime I need it.
Opie is already the dog of the century as far as I'm concerned, but we are excited about this opportunity to fundraise on behalf of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and contribute to the cure for human and doggie blood cancers. We hope you'll join our pack. :-)