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DENVER/July 14, 2022 – Morris Animal Foundation today announced it is funding a new study at the University of Saskatchewan, Canada, to develop improved diagnostic tools for detecting mammary cancer in dogs. Pet Valu, located in Canada, and Blue Buffalo are funding partners on the project.

Mammary cancer is a common tumor diagnosis in intact female dogs. Currently, there is no way to screen high-risk dogs for early mammary lesions - and up to 60% of these tumors already are malignant at the time of diagnosis. Early detection, before the development of invasive and widespread disease, could greatly improve prognosis.

“Mammary cancer continues to be a significant issue for dogs, but as with other cancers, earlier detection opens possibilities for significantly better treatment outcomes,” said Dr. Janet Patterson-Kane, Morris Animal Foundation Chief Scientific Officer.

University of Saskatchewan researchers, led by Dr. Melissa Meachem, will investigate the role of three cell markers in the progression of canine mammary cancer, from benign early lesions to aggressive cancer. In previous human studies, increased expression of these cell markers in women was linked to mammary cancer. If successful, researchers will explore the use of these markers to improve early diagnostics of mammary tumors in dogs.

“We are very grateful for the generous funding support from Blue Buffalo and Pet Valu that is making this study possible,” said Patterson-Kane. “Success of this initial work may lead to the development of useful diagnostic tools.”

Cancer impacts animals worldwide and is a leading cause of death in dogs over the age of 2. Since 1962, Morris Animal Foundation has funded more than 300 cancer studies, invested nearly $40 million, and continues to make strides against the disease, an effort which includes the generous support of organizations such as Blue Buffalo and Pet Valu.

About Morris Animal Foundation
Morris Animal Foundation’s mission is to bridge science and resources to advance the health of animals. Founded in 1948 and headquartered in Denver, it is one of the largest nonprofit animal health research organizations in the world, funding more than $142 million in critical studies across a broad range of species. Learn more at

About Blue Buffalo
Blue Buffalo was founded on a promise to a loveable Airdale named Blue who struggled with cancer. The brand’s mission to “Love them like family. Feed them like family.”  has evolved into a whole new way of feeding pets. Since its founding in 2003, Blue Buffalo has always used high-quality natural ingredients with real meat first. Never any corn, wheat or soy. And no poultry by-product meals. The result is a portfolio of high-quality, natural food and treats that both dogs and cats love.

About Pet Valu
Pet Valu is Canada’s leading retailer of pet food and pet-related supplies with over 600 corporate-owned or franchised locations across the country. For more than 40 years, Pet Valu has earned the trust and loyalty of pet parents by offering knowledgeable customer service, a premium product offering and engaging in-store services. Pet Valu’s neighborhood stores offer more than 7,000 competitively priced products, including a broad assortment of premium, super premium, holistic and award-winning proprietary brands. To learn more, please visit

Media Contact:

Dane Madrid