Wayside’s Top Dog Pens Book About Canine Cancer

Purchase this book and the proceeds benefit Wayside Waifs

Purchase this book and the proceeds benefit Wayside Waifs

What do you do when your beloved therapy dog gets cancer? You do everything you can to save him, because you aren’t the only one who needs him. Everyday, Wishbone, our 10 year old Golden Retriever would take his place inside by Volkswagen Beetle and stick his head out the window. He was almost 100 pounds and his big cheeks flapped in the wind and his ears flew backwards, as we headed to work at Sunflower House.  

I was the President there at the time and Wishbone’s role was to provide care and comfort to children who came there as a result of sexual abuse. He knew which staff members went to McDonald’s in the morning, and would follow them down the hall to wait for a few scraps. He always sat outside my office and when the detectives came in to interview the children they were reduced to 5 year olds as they interacted with Wishbone. Everyone called him a Teddy Bear with a heartbeat. They even named the driveway at Sunflower House “Wishbone Way”.

Everybody loved him. One day while giving him a bath, we discovered a swollen lymph node in his neck. Wishbone had lymphoma. We were lucky it had not spread but the treatments would be long and expensive. We started his chemotherapy that day. Week after week for five months, Wishbone spent the day at the hospital and just like a human cancer patient, he waited patiently while his IV drip drained into his body. He displayed all the side-effects you would expect: loss of appetite and energy, and yes, he lost some hair. Finally in December of 2008, we got the good news. Wishbone was cancer free.

He remained a faithful loving therapy dog and friend for almost two more years. But, time catches up with all of us. And for Wishbone, it came at age 13. On January 15, 2010, we took a walk in the park. On Monday he was gone. In the middle of all this, I was interviewing to become the President of Wayside Waifs. I found it to be a sign. Wishbone’s way of telling me that I had to come to Wayside and take care of other animals. But, there was one more thing I needed to do. Wishbone loved children and they loved him. Why not write a book about his cancer journey, so it wouldn’t be so scary.  “Dogs Get Cancer Too” was born.

I am so proud that his life will continue to help others. If you know someone with cancer who has small children or grandchildren, I encourage you to get this book. Children with cancer love to hear the story and are amazed that Dogs Get Cancer Too!

You can purchase a copy of “Dogs Get Cancer Too” at Whiskers & Wags, a boutique located inside Wayside Waifs at the Harold and Marilyn Melcher Adoption Center.  100% of your purchases at Whiskers & Wags benefit the animals at Wayside Waifs.


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