Philanthropy Improves the Health of Golden Retrievers


Sharon Albright
Manager of Communications and Veterinary Outreach
AKC Canine Health Foundation
Phone: 919-334-4019

For Immediate Release

RALEIGH, NC (September 16, 2019) – The AKC Canine Health Foundation (CHF) has a long-standing relationship with the Golden Retriever Foundation (GRF) to support their dedication to improving the health of Golden Retrievers.

The Golden Retriever Foundation was established as a non-profit organization by the Golden Retriever Club of America in 1997 to fund projects that further the health and welfare of Golden Retrievers. Since then, GRF and its donors have worked closely in collaboration with CHF to invest over $1.7 million in canine health research and educational grants.

“Golden Retriever owners are passionate about improving the health of the breed,” states John Cotter, GRF President. “The Golden Retriever Foundation partners with the AKC Canine Health Foundation on scientific and educational grants because it allows us to make real progress in canine health.”

In collaboration with CHF, GRF canine health research support includes:

  • A study for early detection and prevention of canine hemangiosarcoma. Working with the American Boxer Charitable Foundation and the Portuguese Water Dog Foundation, Phase 3 of the project is now underway.
  • Most recently, support for educational grants in theriogenology, through the American Kennel Club/AKC Canine Health Foundation/Theriogenology Foundation Small Animal Theriogenology Residency Program. This program provides for training veterinary practitioners in companion animal reproductive medicine and surgery, including canine clinical genetics.
  • A comprehensive breed health survey conducted in 1998 which laid the groundwork for future scientific study with data such as the frequency and pattern of occurrence of health-related conditions and causes of death in Golden Retrievers.
  • Identification of heritable risk factors and tumor mutations that are implicated in the pathogenesis of lymphoma and hemangiosarcoma in Golden Retrievers.
  • Examination of epigenetic changes in canine lymphoma cells to identify new therapeutic targets for this common cancer.
  • Grants for the development of a polygenetic risk model for pigmentary uveitis in Golden Retrievers, a painful, inflammatory disease of the eye, and to further understand the pathological consequences of the disorder in this breed.
  • A study to assess the genetic diversity of Golden Retrievers in North America and develop a tool to preserve and maximize the genetic diversity and overall health of the breed.
  • Research for subvalvular aortic stenosis (SAS), a congenital heart disease, in Golden Retrievers. Additional study will search for causative genetic mutations to develop diagnostic tests and inform breeding strategies.
  • Launch of a new multi-institutional therapeutic clinical trial for hemangiosarcoma, taking what has been learned from human cancer to help dogs.

CHF Chief Executive Officer Diane Brown, DVM, PhD states, “The dedication and insight of members of the Golden Retriever Foundation and similar organizations helps CHF effectively address the most pressing health needs of all dogs. Collaboration is key to generate breakthrough discoveries to improve canine health, and CHF is grateful for the support of the Golden Retriever Foundation in this endeavor.”

Golden Retrievers and many other dogs have and will continue to benefit from the collaboration between the AKC Canine Health Foundation and the Golden Retriever Foundation. By working with CHF, GRF ensures that their investments support peer-reviewed scientific research of the highest quality and with the greatest potential to improve the health of dogs. GRF is one of over 200 AKC dog breed parent clubs, breed health foundations, and other canine organizations that partner with CHF so that all dogs can live longer, healthier lives.

Learn more about CHF’s portfolio of canine health research at
Support canine health research at


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About CHF
Since 1995, the AKC Canine Health Foundation has leveraged the power of science to address the health needs of all dogs. With more than $52 million in funding to date, the Foundation provides grants for the highest quality canine health research and shares information on the discoveries that help prevent, treat and cure canine diseases. The Foundation meets and exceeds industry standards for fiscal responsibility, as demonstrated by their highest four-star Charity Navigator rating and GuideStar Platinum Seal of Transparency. Learn more at


About GRF
The Golden Retriever Foundation’s mission is to foster and promote the public's knowledge and appreciation of dogs in general and Golden Retrievers in particular; to further understanding of the diseases, genetic defects, injuries and other ailments that afflict dogs in general and Golden Retrievers in particular; to promote and assist the development, publication and dissemination of educational materials about the proper care, treatment, breeding, health, development and training of Golden Retrievers; and to foster and promote the rescue, rehabilitation and placement of displaced Golden Retrievers. Learn more at

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