My Friend: Standing Strong on Canine Osteosarcoma

We are proud to announce that principal photography has begun on our next documentary My Friend: Standing Strong, a full-length feature on canine osteosarcoma.

Osteosarcoma (OSA) makes up about 5% of all canine tumors, but is by far the most common bone tumor of the dog.  Signs of this aggressive bone cancer are subtle, such as minor lameness, a hitch in the dog’s gate, a bit of swelling and maybe even some joint pain.  As in all cancers, early detection is important, so shining a light on symptoms so that owners can be proactive is one of the many reasons we decided to tackle OSA in this, our third canine cancer project.

Because of the aggressiveness of OSA, many owners are faced with very frightening choices.  Amputation of the affected limb is quite often necessary, leaving owners in turmoil.  Chemotherapy is needed due to the cancer’s high rate of metastasis.  The average life expectancy with amputation and chemotherapy is about one human year, but the equivalent of seven dog years. 

We want to show dog owners that there is more to this disease than amputation.  Dogs are resilient and as some say are born with three legs and a spare.  Osteosarcoma is not the end of the world for your dog, it is just a new beginning, whether it is amputation or limb-sparing there is a solution and an option for everyone.

Pop-Up Cancer Talks

Next Talk: April 15th, 2018
At VCA Canada Guardian veterinary centre, Edmonton AB @ 4PM

View Talk Flyer

What are Pop-Up Cancer Talks?

CLEAR and Veterinary Cancer Group of Culver City, Tustin, Woodland Hills and the South Bay have partnered in a mission to change the way pet owners view cancer and education is step one.

View more Details Here!

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What We Are Doing

CLEAR’s Support of Research at Cornell University

CLEAR is proud to support the research of Dr. Kristy Richards at Cornell University. She is working to better treat, and hopefully cure, canine lymphoma. Because lymphoma in dogs is less well studied than humans, the research tools to study canine cancer are less well developed. With the help of CLEAR, Dr. Richards’ group is working on making and characterizing these research tools, which will be available to the entire canine cancer research community after they are created. This will encourage and enable more research into canine lymphoma and hopefully speed the development of better treatments and a future cure for the disease.

A Reason To Change

A Hybrid Documentary Mixing Old School MTV Music Video With The Power Of A Reality Check Documentary

The Future is Bright!

CLEAR is expanding, the future of CLEAR is bright and our reach keeps growing. To make this happen, donate, donate, donate!

A New CLEAR Music Video

“A Reason to Change”

Our second video, titled “A Reason to Change”, is a hybrid of genres created to highlight an important, but little known area in fighting cancer. With one part music video and one part documentary short, the piece highlights comparative oncology as we follow the story of a young boy and dog whose paths cross briefly, but their lives are forever changed.

So what is comparative oncology? According to the Puccini Foundation, Comparative Oncology is the study of cancer that naturally occurs in animals, and the comparison to its human counterpart in order to identify treatments and cures that can benefit both humans and animals. A key distinction of comparative oncology is that disease is never induced in the animals being treated; the cancer has only occurred spontaneously. Comparative oncology is not about animal research but rather sharing discoveries and fighting cancer together.

The project is directed by Stacey M. Zipfel, who also directed CLEAR’s groundbreaking and award-winning documentary “My Friend: Changing the Journey”.

Once again we worked hard to keep this a family affair, thanks to the help of friends and family. Our young boy is Director’s Stacey nephew Jay Patriarca and the younger brother of CLEAR’s Youth Ambassador, Maddie. Our dog owner is Caroline Van der Wyk, who, with her beautiful dog Bree Bree, stole hearts and gave many hope in My Friend: Changing the Journey. Rounding out our leads is none other than Founder Terry Simons’ dog Ripper.

We would like to give a big thank you to Veterinary Cancer Group not only for allowing us to shoot the interiors at their facility in Culver City, but for their support and unyielding commitment to fighting cancer.

What is a music video without music? Well, we have our own original music that was composed by Elias with lyrics written by CLEAR’s Founder Terry Simons and arranged by the incredibly talented Ted Perlman. The song was sung by Page Jackson of Mary Carves The Chicken, who did the original song for “My Friend: Changing the Journey”. We are very excited about this little documentary and hope it helps spread the word that animals, just like humans, get cancer, but by working together we can change the world.

CLEAR is proud to be partners with the following

Amazon Smile

Making an Impact, One Dog At a Time

MY FRIEND: CHANGING THE JOURNEY is a powerful documentary that sheds light on the important issue of cancer and how it affects our animal companions. Director Stacey M. Zipfel and producer Terry Simons have created an important piece of work that helps better educate dog owners on cancer clinical signs and treatment options and enlightens the veterinary profession on how families deal with the disease.Jane Lynch Actress/Host/Animal Advocate
Thank you CLEAR for bringing awareness to canine lymphoma. Arming pet owners with the knowledge to fight this disease can help them save their best friend.Jill Goularte, Producer, Fox's Cause for Paws
…‘My Friend: Changing the Journey’ was a terrific display of how strong the human-animal bond can be. Our pets are members of the family, and this film beautifully showed what lengths owners will go to in order to give them the best care.Rob Warren, Communications & Marketing Officer, UC Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital