Cansa and local animal company come together to fight cancer

Zelma Opland's two Maltese poodles enjoy taking part in the organised walks for Cansa. Photo: Robyn Kirk


The fight against cancer got some help from our four-legged friends during a Bark for Life event that took place on 7 October in Maliessig.

The Cancer Association of South Africa (Cansa), together with the Fluffs ‘n’ Tufts Kennels and Cattery came together recently to host a Bark for Life event in Maliessig to raise awareness about the disease and funds for the organisation.

“This Bark for Life event honours our caregiving companions, and supports their and our fight against cancer,” explained Tarryn Human, a Cansa community organiser involved in the event. “Families and dogs can come through to take part in the walk and enjoy a fun-filled day for the fight against cancer.”

Kenzo the dog was on his best behaviour during the Bark for Life event at Fluffs ‘n’ Tufts. Photo: Robyn Kirk

Community members and their canine companions were invited to donate funds and partake in a 1.6km walk around the Fluffs ‘n’ Tufts grounds in Maliessig, with a shorter walk also available for older dogs.

“The money fundraised today will go towards Cansa’s efforts to research the disease, educate South Africans and support those fighting cancer,” Human explained.

Niki Elliott, the owner of Fluffs ‘n’ Tufts, agreed to host the Bark for Life event as she has lost family members to the disease. Photo: Robyn Kirk

Fluffs ‘n’ Tufts owner Niki Elliott said that she was very excited when Cansa approached the company about hosting the event.

“I have lost the majority of my family to cancer,” Elliott explained. “We need to bring plenty of awareness about cancer in both dogs and humans.”

The day also saw an experienced vet, Gorgina Crewe, talk to attendees about the disease in dogs and cats and her experiences treating the disease. She focused particularly on the issue of solar induced (skin) cancer in companion animals.

Milo the dog joins his owner Delia Glaeser for the talk about cancer in pets. Photo: Robyn Kirk

“In South Africa, the risk of skin cancer is high because of the weather,” she told her audience. “Early detection is the best prevention, so keep an eye out for lumps that don’t heal [on your cat or dog’s body] and which get bigger.”


Pagan the bull terrier with her owner Christine Deist. Light coloured dogs such as Pagan have less protection from the harmful effects of the sun, and are at risk of developing skin cancer. Photo: Robyn Kirk

Are you hosting a fundraiser for Cansa? Tell us about it by emailing [email protected]

Staff Reporter

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