The Zzisko Cancer Fund
$6,305 raised
105% of $6k goal
134 contributors
5 Years running

The Zzisko Cancer Fund is a organized effort to obtain treatment for a faithful and dedicated Working Dog..

The Zzisko Story: Zzisko was whelped on Lackland Air Force Base in June of 2005. He spent his early months in a foster home until he was old enough to return to Lackland for training. At ten months old Zzisko was selected to assume his canine career as a Combat Tracking Dog. Upon selection, Zzisko was paired with his handler and partner Bryan Manthey, who went through a six month long tracking course with him. During tracking school both Zzisko and his handler began to flourish and develop a bond as a team. In November of 2006, Zzisko and Bryan were stationed at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton California. Zzisko continued to train with his handler until September of 2007, when they both embarked on their first deployment to Iraq. Zzisko and Bryan spent seven and a half months in the Fallujah area of Iraq and experienced many successes together as a team. The following year, in November of 2008, Zzisko and Bryan deployed again to Iraq, operating across a significant portion of the areas held by Coalition Forces. After returning from Iraq, Zzisko and Bryan remained together as a team, trained, and prepared together until deploying yet again in June of 2010 to Afghanistan. After a long seven month deployment, they returned to Camp Pendleton as a team that had operated together for almost five years. Shortly after returning from Afghanistan, Bryan received orders to Joint Service Base San Antonio to teach and instruct the Combat Tracking Course. Zzisko awaited patiently, far away from his long time handler and friend, for a year before being assigned to the Combat Tracking Course to retrain. After spending eight months on Joint Service Base San Antonio, in August of 2012, Zzisko was retired from military service and was finally able to go home with Bryan, having fulfilled over seven years of military service. During Zzisko’s career he reached a level of success and celebrity that is rarely seen in working dogs. He was featured in the movie, “Always Faithful”, K-9 Cop Magazine, and Marines Magazine. Zzisko had been retired for just over a year when Bryan discovered masses in his Lymph nodes. Immediately after Bryan’s discovery of these masses, Zzisko was brought to a veterinarian, where he received an initial diagnosis of Lympho-sarcoma on September 23rd, 2013.

The Mission: The mission of this campaign is to raise funds through the kindness of certain individuals. The funds are to be used in paying for the costly treatment required to save Zzisko’s life and allow him to enjoy his well earned retirement for as long as possible. In most cases, lymphoma kills quickly if left untreated, and sometimes shortens lifespan to as little as 4 – 6 weeks. With proper treatment Zzisko could possibly spend years with his friends and family.

The funds raised from this campaign are in no way intended for frivolous use and all funds raised above and beyond the cost of treatment will be donated to Washington State University's research projects specializing in animal cancer treatment. Long term, if this cause receives the response that we hope it will, we intend to start a not for profit organization that supports treatment for retired Police and Military Working dogs. This will be through donations to universities across the country fighting the battle against cancer in our beloved partners, and through direct support for retired Working Dogs needing assistance.

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