Maggie’s Stand: A Golden Retriever’s Battle with Cancer

Peter French of Deltona, Fla., has had Golden retrievers in his life for more than 40 years. Peter views his dogs as more than just his pets, but as part of his family. Ten years ago he added a young retriever named Maggie to his family, and her affectionate charisma has brought smiles to everyone in Peter’s life ever since.

Maggie has always been by Peter’s side, even while he was at work. Before retiring,
Peter owned a mobile food truck and brought Maggie on all of his routes. The local lunch goers loved seeing Maggie and regularly stopped by just to greet the graceful Golden.

“Maggie is the most loving dog I’ve ever been around,” said Peter. “Everywhere we go, people come out to see her and the kids in the neighborhood are always coming to visit her. We joke that she has more friends than I do.”

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Peter has had pet insurance for all of his retrievers over the years, but has never needed it for anything major until the past couple months after he noticed a lump on Maggie’s nose. Peter took Maggie to a local veterinarian to examine the lump. After various tests, the results came back with disheartening news. Maggie’s lump was diagnosed as a mast cell tumor and she would need to see a specialty oncologist for treatment.

“The news hit me like a truck,” said Peter. “She was her normal self and seemed healthy as could be right before the diagnosis, but things like this are the reason I’ve always insured my dogs. No matter what, I was going to get Maggie the best care possible. ”

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Along with removing the lump on Maggie’s nose, the oncology team examined the rest of Maggie’s body for further tumors. They discovered numerous tiny lumps on Maggie’s neck and stomach, which needed to be removed as well. The cancer was moving aggressively and Maggie was placed on chemotherapy pills to combat the disease.

“She’s a fighter,” said Peter. “We’ve had to switch medications because of the side effects, but she’s still happy. She’s right in the thick of treatment and things are looking better, but we’ve got a long way to go.”

While Maggie fights the disease, Peter continues to be by her side every step of the way. Peter is delighted by the work of the oncologists and is grateful for the pet insurance support he’s received from Nationwide.

“The veterinarians have been excellent and I know they’re doing everything they can for Maggie,” said Peter. “Maggie’s pet insurance coverage from Nationwide has been wonderful. I would never want to lose Maggie because of a money issue and having pet insurance has helped prevent that. I’d rather be prepared for the worst and hope for the best, than be stuck making a difficult decision.”

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You can help support pets like Maggie during November for National Pet Cancer Awareness Month. Visit to find out how you can raise awareness and $20k for a cure.


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