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The AKC Canine Health Foundation (CHF) celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2020. Founded by the American Kennel Club on February 21st, 1995 as an independent, 501c3 non-profit organization, CHF has grown into the world’s largest funder of health research focused solely on dogs. By funding high-quality, humane scientific research and sharing health information, CHF works to prevent, treat, and cure canine disease.

“The American Kennel Club had great foresight to create the AKC Canine Health Foundation,” says CHF Chairman of the Board J. Charles Garvin, MD, FACS. “I hope that all dog lovers join me and the CHF Board of Directors in gratitude for this organization which continues to have a profound impact on canine health.”

Since 1995, CHF and its donors have invested more than $56 million in over 1,000 research and educational grants and canine health projects. The results have been published in 794 peer-reviewed publications and cited more than 31,000 times, demonstrating the impact and relevance of their funded studies.

Thanks to the support of many dog lovers, over the past two and a half decades, among other initiatives and achievements, the CHF has:

  • Spearheaded research and publication of the first genetic linkage map of the canine genome, leading the way for the complete canine genome map.
  • Collaborated on the creation of the Canine Comparative Oncology and Genomics Consortium (CCOGC), a repository of canine tumor tissues and other biologic specimens to facilitate comparative cancer research and hasten discoveries to benefit both canine and human cancer patients.
  • Started the Search & Rescue Dog Health Fund to study the health of search and rescue dogs deployed in response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
  • Established educational grants to support the next generation of clinical researchers and canine reproductive medicine and clinical genetics specialists.
  • Provided funding for studies that discovered the underlying genetic mutations for diseases such as exercise-induced collapse, cystinuria, stationary night blindness, and Von Willebrand Disease.

“CHF is committed to our work with dedicated dog breeders, researchers, and dog lovers to make real strides in improving the health of all dogs,” says CHF Chief Executive Officer Diane Brown, DVM, PhD. “As we tackle longstanding health concerns like cancer, and as new infectious diseases and health challenges arise, our stringent research processes and responsible financial policies further our goal to help all dogs live longer healthier lives.”

Since 1995, the CHF has met and exceeded industry standards for fiscal responsibility, as demonstrated by their highest four-star Charity Navigator rating and GuideStar Platinum Seal of Transparency.

Already in 2020, CHF has awarded over $2.1 million in 36 new canine health research grants. Learn more about CHF and these accomplishments.