Veterinarians do not get nearly enough praise for the incredible work they do. Our pets are so very important to us, and vets work hard to ensure that they have the best quality of life.
One man is doing everything he can to express his appreciation for his vets after they saved his 7-year-old golden retriever from cancer.
David MacNeil has purchased a $6 million Super Bowl commercial in celebration of the vets at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine. He’s encouraging others to donate to these pet doctors, who are using the latest developments in veterinary medicine to help save the lives of animals.
The 30-second commercial is called “Lucky Dog.” Funds raised from the commercial will support research and help the school obtain some new equipment.
David hopes that the commercial will show his gratitude for the wonderful treatment that his dog, Scout, has received. He also hopes it will make people aware of the advancements being made that can help both animals and humans battle cancer.
David MacNeil has a very special best friend. He was worried sick when his 7-year-old golden retriever, Scout, collapsed during the summer of 2019. Scout was diagnosed with cancer and given one month to live.
David, the founder and CEO of car accessories company WeatherTech, couldn’t accept that outcome for his best friend. He refused to put down his best buddy, who’d been given a 1% chance of survival. He knew there had to be another answer.
“There he was in this little room, standing in the corner … and he’s wagging his tail at me,” David recalled of the moment to NBC Wisconsin. “I’m like, ‘I’m not putting that dog down. There’s just absolutely no way.'”
David took Scout to the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine. There, Scout was treated with chemotherapy and radiation. Months later, Scout’s tumor is nearly gone, and David is endlessly grateful to the vets who made it happen.
“Scout is kind of the perfect patient in that he’s tolerated multiple modes of therapy very well, his primary tumor has responded beautifully to treatment, and we’ve been able to maintain his quality of life at a very high level,” said David Vail, professor of comparative oncology at the School of Veterinary Medicine.
“At the end of the day, Scout’s quality of life is his family’s most important concern, as it is ours.” Scout’s family is making sure he enjoys life to the fullest now that he has another chance to.
There are three options typically available when treating pets with cancer. Pets can have tumors removed with surgery, can receive chemotherapy, and can undergo radiotherapy. The decision on which treatment or combination of treatments to use is made based on the type of cancer, its growth rate, and the amount it has spread.
David took out an ad to run during the Super Bowl celebrating Scout’s recovery and the vets who made it possible. The 30-second commercial is called “Lucky Dog.” The commercial encourages people to donate to the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Therapy.
“This is an amazing opportunity not only for the University of Wisconsin–Madison and the School of Veterinary Medicine but for veterinary medicine worldwide,” says Mark Markel, dean of the School of Veterinary Medicine.
“So much of what’s known globally today about how best to diagnose and treat devastating diseases such as cancer originated in veterinary medicine. We’re thrilled to share with Super Bowl viewers how our profession benefits beloved animals like Scout and helps people, too.”
The commercial set David back about $6 million. He felt that instead of just writing a check directly to the school, he’d take the opportunity to solicit donations to the largest audience he possibly could. David discussed the decision in a statement released ahead of the big game.
“Scout’s illness devastated us,” it reads. “We wanted this year’s Super Bowl effort to not only raise awareness, but also financial support for the incredible research and innovative treatments happening at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine, where Scout is still a patient. We wanted to use the biggest stage possible to highlight Scout’s story and these incredible breakthroughs, which are not just limited to helping dogs and pets.”
“This research will help advance cancer treatments for humans as well, so there’s the potential to save millions of lives of all species,” David added. It’s a beautiful way to celebrate the joyous recovery of his beloved pet. It’s also an opportunity to help others who go through this painful process.
Scout looks purely overjoyed to have beaten the odds and to be appearing in his second Super Bowl commercial. He was in a commercial last year for WeatherTech. There’s also a video available detailing Scout’s treatment.
Scout has two weeks of radiation therapy ahead of him, but he has an enormous support system to help him through. The hope is that radiation will help clear up the spots where the cancer has microscopically metastasized into his lungs. He’s not quite out of the woods yet, but the future is looking brighter for this sweet pooch.
Be sure to keep an eye out for Scout on game day. If you’re interested in donating, you can learn more about donating by visiting WeatherTech’s donation page. In the meantime, we’ll be sending all the best good boy vibes Scout’s way.