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March 26, 2019 – In 2007, the American German Shepherd Dog Charitable Foundation Inc. (AGSDCF) made its first gift to support canine health studies at Morris Animal Foundation. Since then, the organization has continued its investment in research, particularly in health concerns for the German shepherd.

But this year, they decided to invest in veterinary students, too, and made a gift of $100,000 to support Morris Animal Foundation’s Veterinary Student Scholars program. The program provides grants to current veterinary students with an interest in animal health research, and who have submitted an approved proposal for a summer research project.

“We are thrilled to be supporting the up-and-coming great minds in veterinary medicine who will be helping our dogs,” said AGSDCF President Deb Hokkanen. “It’s exciting for our organization to be working together with Morris Animal Foundation to improve the health of all breeds and every dog.”

AGSDCF was founded in 1984 and is devoted to funding research projects that improve the health of the German shepherd dog. Over the years, they have funded research projects in hip dysplasia, genetics of bloat, canine epilepsy, musculoskeletal conditions and, more recently, hemangiosarcoma, an almost universally fatal cancer in dogs. While they continue to actively fund research, the organization wanted to expand their giving to support educational programs as well.

“We’re getting a little long in the tooth and need to invest in the next generation,” said Hokkanen. “For our donors, this means not only continuing to support research into health conditions that affect German shepherds, but also making sure we do our part to support the veterinary professionals who care for our dogs every day.”

Hokkanen noted that for AGSDCF donors, giving back to the breed they are passionate about is simply a matter of love and appreciation. “We are grateful for these special dogs who have given their hearts and souls to make our daily lives happier. We give to the health of the breed, and in thanks for their gracing us every day with their wonderful presence.”