In my recent post, “Puppy Up Nation: Grassroots Fight to Cure Canine Cancer” I shared with you information about an organization called Puppy Up. The Puppy Up Foundation’s primary mission is to fund canine cancer research by raising money through walks in 30 different states. On Saturday, September 16th, the inaugural walk in Chicago took place along the beautiful lakefront at Montrose Harbor.
Chicago’s First Walk Helps Fund Canine Cancer Research
On a sunny, and very hot morning, walkers and their dogs gathered at Montrose Beach. Each walker paid $25 to participate but many raised more money with teams or paid for sponsorship opportunities. Dolly and I hung out in the shade waiting for things to kick off. We were meeting up with two other area bloggers, Kristen with her dog Ruby, from The Daily Pip, and Sandy with her dog Buffy, from Enviro-Dog. Buffy recently lost an eye to glaucoma, when the event photographer Josh Feeney saw us, he had to stop by to meet her.
The sponsors and vendors all had tables with tents set up around the picnic area, but with no shade, Dolly and I found it too hot to spend much time checking them out. We did stop by Steve Dale’s Facebook live broadcast from the “green carpet” where I got to talk about Puppy Up and what they do. We visited the memorial board where walkers wrote messages to those they lost, and took some photos of Dolly and Ruby just before the walk began.
Puppy Up founder Luke Wilson, with his two Great Pyrenees, gives the signal to start the walk with about 200 registered walkers.
Touching memorial signs lined the walk in memory of dogs lost to cancer, reminding us of why we walked, to raise money for canine cancer research.
The walk took us along Chicago’s beautiful lakefront from Montrose Harbor, past Montrose Dog Beach, Mondog, to Foster Beach. Just under a mile each way. There were lots of water breaks along the way, for dogs and walkers, we stayed in the shade and on the grass as much as possible. Dolly has no tolerance for the heat, just like me. The day before I happened to find a cooling vest in the clearance bin at Petco. Of course Dolly hates to wear anything, but the cooling vest, kept cool with cold water, seemed to really help her out. When she’s hot she’ll plant herself down and not move.
After reaching Foster Beach we stopped for a rest with Ruby and her family. We got separated from Sandy and Buffy early on. We must have stayed longer than we thought because we didn’t see any other walkers on the way back to the start.
Finally, Ruby and I made it to the finish line!
We stayed around a little bit after the walk, for a small donation Dolly got to try some yummy dog ice cream, Arrfscraf, that she didn’t want to stop licking. I took it away from her to melt a bit, making it easier for her to lick. By now the vendors are packing up so we headed to the car, where Dolly licked the ice cream non-stop on the way home. We learned so much about what happens to pets and their families after a cancer diagnosis, it’s no less heartbreaking than it is with people which is why Puppy Up focuses on comparative oncology research.
It’s not too late for your donation to count towards the Chicago walk if you make your donation by the end of September. If you’d like to make a donation please visit here.
Sponsors and Vendors Who Supported Puppy Up’s Cause to Fund Canine Cancer Research
Presenting Sponsor: Premier Veterinary Group by Ethos has a veterinary oncologist on staff in addition to being a 24-hour emergency hospital. If you recall, Premier is where Taffy sees her internal medicine veterinary specialist, not to mention a few unfortunate emergency visits.
Gold Paw Sponsor: Live Like Roo Foundation assists dogs and their owners through a cancer diagnosis by providing emotional and financial support.
Gold Paw Sponsor: Metropolitan Veterinary Center
Silver Paw Sponsors: Portable John, Inc.; MedVet Chicago; Brilliant Pad
Bronze Paw Sponsors: Kriser’s Natural Pet; Fetch! Pet Care of Greater Chicago; Pet Your Shirt; Diamondback Drugs; Bentley’s Pet Stuff; Tucker Pup’s Pet Resort
- Pure Vita, Pure & Holistic Natural Pet Foods
- Tastefully Simple
- Tripawds Foundation
- Arrfscarf Rolling Ice Cream Cart for Doggies
- Alive Rescue
- The Anti-Cruelty Society
- Compassionate Veterinary Hospice
- Musical entertainment: Suburban Cowboys
- Entertainment: Dog Agility
- CPD K9 Officer Ibarra with K-9 RŌZI
- Event Photography: Josh Feeney Photography
- Live from the Green Carpet with Steve Dale
- Event emcee: Elliott Bambrough from WGNTV’s Chicago’s Best