I'm sad to report that one of CCF's young Kangal guard dogs, Cazgir, died a few weeks ago. Cazgir had been imported to CCF from the United States to help build up the Kangal breeding lines. Cazgir was a victim of a disease that is causing serious problems with livestock guarding dogs in sub-Saharan Africa: lingual squamous cell carcinoma (or SCC of the tongue). SCC is much more prevalent in dogs in sub-Saharan Africa than in other parts of the world, probably due to damage caused from sun exposure. CCF is working hard to determine if there are other predisposing factors, such as nutrition and genetics, and we are also trying out various methods of early diagnosis and treatments. Because livestock guarding dogs are the greatest hope for the survival of cheetahs, we cannot abandon the program. We simply must find a way to stop SCC. We will keep you informed of the progress we make. In the meantime, we mourn the loss of Cazgir. These dogs are so much more than guard dogs to the staff. Thank you for your support of this very important program.
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