“I fell in love with Toby from his online profile photo,” said Ali Knight, Toby’s mom. “It was a little like internet dating.”
The Knight family adopted Toby from a Colorado Labrador rescue in 2009 when he was a pup.
“He’s a big goofy boy,” said Knight. “We think he might be part Great Dane because he’s really big. He’s so sweet – we sometimes call him Velcro because he always wants to be touching one of us.”
In October 2019, Knight noticed a bump around Toby’s groin. A neighbor, who happens to be a veterinarian, checked him out and knew right away it was lymphoma but recommended Toby visit a specialist to confirm.
After visiting the specialist and receiving confirmation of the diagnosis, the family also learned that his prognosis was two months without treatment. “We weren’t ready to say goodbye,” said Knight.
Wanting to pursue treatment, the Knight family could have opted for standard chemotherapy. However, his veterinary oncologist suggested reaching out to the Flint Animal Cancer Center to learn more about clinical trials for dogs with lymphoma. After learning that Toby qualified for a trial, his family enrolled him in the CHOP Dose Escalation Study. Using the standard CHOP protocol, the study seeks to determine if patients can achieve longer remission with increased dosing personalized to the patient’s response.
Toby finished his treatment protocol in February 2020. Since then, he returns for monthly check-ups and remains in remission. After each appointment, Knight breathes a sigh of relief.
“Our experience has been nothing but positive throughout from check-in to interactions with students and doctors. They have taken such great care of Toby. We’re especially grateful for Lindsay Carroll, one of the clinical trials veterinary technicians. She has been our rock – she knows him so well.”
“Toby is a complete goofball, and he always puts a smile on my face,” said Carroll. “He just loves coming for his check-ups, and I love seeing him each month. We’re grateful to Toby’s family for their commitment to participating in a clinical trial that has benefitted not only Toby but will benefit future patients as well.”
It’s been 21 months since Toby was first diagnosed, and Knight is grateful for all the extra time and believes Toby got “the golden ticket.”
“I really appreciate the work and commitment of the staff at the Flint Animal Cancer Center. They’ve given us more time with Toby, and they’ve also given him a continued quality of life. He’s slowing down due to age, but not because of cancer, and he’s still ready to pull out his tug rope and play like he’s two years old again.”
Our One Cure program is celebrating 10 years of progress in the quest to conquer cancer in all species! Gifts to One Cure support our clinical trials program and comparative oncology research. Give today to support better treatments for pets and people with cancer.