The Golden Retriever Lifetime Study, is the largest and longest observational study ever undertaken to improve the health of dogs.
Hailey came to GRRMF at six months of age from a family that wasn’t prepared for an active puppy. Mom Emily learned about the Morris Animal Foundation’s cancer research study and was very excited when newly adopted Hailey qualified to participate. The Golden Retriever Lifetime Study, which began in 2012, is charting the lives of 3,000+ purebred Golden Retrievers and Hailey is Hero #159.
Every year Hailey gives blood, hair, nails and urine samples to the research team. Her local vet monitors her general health and well-being, documenting visits or concerns, and each year Emily completes a questionnaire about Hailey’s food, environment, and general lifestyle habits. Participants for the research program must be purebred goldens and under the age of two.
By studying the genetic variants that make some goldens susceptible to cancer early in life and compare them to others that reach their geriatric years, the Morris Animal Foundation hopes to identify genetic risk factors that will help breeders make thoughtful decisions and improve the breed.
“I was very excited that we could help find the answer for why so many of our precious goldens die from cancer,” reports Emily.