Second annual Dog Walk Against Cancer scheduled

BLACKSBURG, Va., March 31, 2005 – The second annual “Dog Walk Against Cancer” will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 9, on the grounds of the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. The event is open to the public and will be held in conjunction with the college’s annual “Open House.”

Sponsored by the Center for Comparative Oncology (CeCO), the American Cancer Society, and Hill’s Pet Products, the event seeks to raise $25,000 to support student cancer research and increase public awareness about cancer, according to Dr. John Robertson, a professor in the college’s Department of Biomedical Sciences and Pathobiology (DBSP) and director of CeCO, a research center that studies cancer in animals and people.

“Cancer is a serious disease in dogs, just as it is in people,” said Robertson, who estimates that as many as 40 percent of middle-aged and elderly dogs will eventually contract cancer. “Many pet owners have suffered when beloved pets develop this disease. And it will continue to be a tragedy until research unravels the how and why of cancer and finds methods to control and cure it.”

Participants in the “Dog Walk Against Cancer” will complete a course that will wind through the “VMRCVM Grove” and nearby cross-country trails. Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times, must be in good health, and must be current on immunizations, Robertson said. People participating in the event are asked to only bring dogs that get along well with other dogs and other people in crowded conditions.

Individuals participating in the event are asked to acquire sponsors for each owner/dog team and present those funds to organizers on the day of the event. Those wishing to attend can pre-register electronically on CeCO’s website at or by contacting Robertson at (540) 231-7666. Individuals who pre-register by April 7 will receive commemorative T-shirts and a bandana for their dog.

Local organizations, corporations, and other commercial enterprises wishing to provide more substantial support for the event are encouraged to consider a $250 “Gold” level sponsorship of the “Dog Walk Against Cancer.” Recognition opportunities associated with “Gold” level sponsorship include acknowledgement on CeCO’s 2005 Wall of Sponsors.

Chartered in 2002, CeCO is an academic center for basic and clinical research on cancer. The Center is based at the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg and unites a variety of cancer research programs on the Virginia Tech campus. The mission of CeCO is to study the development of cancer in animals and in people, to develop new ways to diagnose cancer, and to find new treatments to control and cure it.

For more information about registering for the event or providing corporate support, please contact Robertson at or call (540) 231-7666.