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Welcome . . .
to the world's largest Golden-inspired website! Since 1997 we have strived to help others strengthen and proactively lengthen the bond. Our 501(c)(3) nonprofit additionally provides cancer treatment grants for working dogs and funds research in comparative oncology.

GOTTA DANCE: A Life Changing Tail
Carolyn Scott & Golden Retriever Rookie exemplify the bond that can be achieved through a positive working relationship between dog and handler. They are truly the Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire of the Canine Freestyle world—one in which training, teamwork, music, and movement combine in a unified celebration of joy. The one and only Ginger & Fred Duo!One of the founders of the Musical Dog Sport Association and involved in this sport since 1996, Carolyn has been featured in Parade Magazine, Dog Training Weekly, and the books, Living With A Golden Retriever and Working Dogs. Carolyn and Rookie are the only U.S. team to have earned the MCSI title of Musical Freestyle Dog Excellent.

This team has appeared on Good Morning America, The Jane Pauley Show, Regis & Kathie Lee, Pet Star, and Petsburg. And, when articles appear on their accomplishments, they turn into must-read events. That is what happened with the Seattle Times article, He's a good dog, fantastic dancer, which made it to Number 3 for Most-Read Stories in May 2005. The summary article also provided this comment: "People who see the Internet clip of Texas-born Carolyn Scott performing a song from "Grease" with her golden retriever Rookie are riveted to the screen. Thousands have sent her e-mails, many saying they cried with joy."

We came to know Carolyn after discovering an article in 2001 that referenced her and Rookie. After posting it to our site, Carolyn contacted us, later sending a video of her Grease performance. We had it rendered digitally, posted it to Youtube, and the rest is history as this clip continues to circulate the world, bringing joy to so many.

There is a powerful message in the life-affirming joy and inner radiance that Carolyn and Rookie exude, as our film demonstrates the restorative miracles that can abound through the embodiment of the human-canine bond. However, it is important to understand that our documentary is NOT a story about canine freestyle. Rather, it is a courageous story of inner strength and survival, as Carolyn continues in a sense to dance for her life. Enduring her fears without relinquishing that important capacity to rejoice, she is buoyed by Rabbi Hillel's words, "I get up. I walk. I fall down. Meanwhile, I keep dancing."  

Paralyzed due to childhood polio at the age of four years, and additionally diagnosed with a significant heart disorder, Carolyn has suffered much physical and psychological pain. And, today, she suffers from the after effects of her initial polio and treatments, evidencing Post Polio Sequelae. This has resulted in Carolyn's no longer competing in the ring or providing freestyle workshops worldwide.  

Candidly told in Carolyn's own words, Gotta Dance is a frank, yet amazingly, inspiring tale. Poignant commentary is shared by esteemed veterinarians and authors, Dr. Allen Schoen, Dr. Marty Becker & Dr. Jaime Modiano, as they further detail the healing benefits of the human-canine Bond and what especially moves them about Carolyn & Rookie's relationship. Dr. Margaret Backman, a clinical psychologist who specializes in working with Post Polio Sequelae/Syndrome sufferers, further provides insight about Carolyn's amazing ability to overcome her acutely painful beginning and formative years. The film truly captures the journey of Carolyn Scott and her Golden Retriever Rookie, hand and paw together, moving from fear to freedom, and so inspiring the lives of all whom they have touched. 
 

Emotional Feedback about Carolyn & Rookie's Bond

"Your video clip actually brought TEARS to my eyes that your pal Rookie could dance with you so VERY well! It was an example of G-d's creation sharing love and companionship. I saw you on Good Morning America and, again, was brought to moist eyes at the incredible demonstration of love and dedication to each other. It all makes me love our animals even more!
Gary

"What a wonderful feeling I get every time I watch both of you dancing together, loving each other. Rookie looks so happy. Watching the two of you just brings joyful tears to my eyes."

"Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful display of the human-animal bond thru the clip of you and Rookie. Every time I watch it, I get tears in my eyes because I completely understand the bond that does exist between humans and their beloved animals."

"In 1992, I was critically injured in a motorcycle accident. At that time, I was exposed to rehab, therapy, pet therapy, etc. Prior to the accident, I too used to love to dance. Due to the leg injury I sustained, I can't really dance any more. Perhaps this is why I find your routine SO moving!"

"I saw you and Rookie on Good Morning America. I found myself crying, but they were tears of pure joy! I grew up with a golden retriever and have very fond memories. The two of you warmed my heart. It's definitely pure gold."

"Carolyn and Rookie certainly made the most of the time and space that they had [on The Jane Pauley Show]. They produced a BIG effect that was way out of proportion to the cramped quarters. I even saw a couple of people in the audience wiping their eyes. That was nice; it made me feel less the idiot for sitting here sobbing over a tiny TV segment. The Westminster dogs were nice to look at and listen to, but Carolyn and Rookie were the highlight of the hour. I do wish it could have lasted a lot longer and gone into much more detail and demonstration. I guess I'm greedy when it comes to watching this team." Judy and Jacob


 

 


THE GREASE Routine, which was originally digitized and posted online by Rochelle Lesser

   



GOTTA DANCE & DR. MODIANO: HELPING BOTH MAN AND DOG Films

Dan Phillips Media has completed our two films, both to benefit comparative oncology research.

With the assistance of Lauren Genkinger, CEO of TG Madison, a $42 million ad agency in Atlanta and founder of the nation’s sixth-largest Golden Rescue, Adopt a Golden Atlanta, we created the logo you see here. GOTTA DANCE is both literal and figurative in meaning. While clearly applicable for canine freestylers, the intent is far more encompassing.

The embodiment of The Bond, where the dance of human and canine is possible, is all about listening for the music, as we attempt to communicate and relate better together. That ability to truly dance with dogs is one we all strive for, and hopefully is aptly represented in this unique image.


Film Screening and Reception
On November 3,2012, at the Land of PureGold Foundation home of the founders, Rochelle and Gary Lesser, we had a small film screening and reception. We presented Dr. Modiano with a check for $15,000, paying him forward on hoped for donations to his cause.

Click here to see photos from this special day.


GOTTA DANCE Trailer

   

Check out our Progress
 
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As of December 31, 2012, we have provided the film to 60 folks who have each made a $50 donation to Dr. Modiano's comparative oncology research. Please help us get to our initial goal of $15,000.
 

 

Get GOTTA DANCE & Dr. MODIANO DVDs as a gift with Comparative Oncology Research Donation . . . Helping both Man and Dog





50.00 (USA only)
 


 




$65.00 (OUTSIDE USA)


 

100% of this donation will be provided to Dr. Modiano, Director of the Animal Cancer Care and Research Program, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota. Comparative oncology is the study of those cancers that occur similarly in people and companion animals in order to identify treatments and cures that benefits them both. A distinction to comparative oncology research is the fact that disease is never induced in the animals being treated. That is, the cancer has only occurred spontaneously.

Humans and dogs have been linked in a mutually beneficial relationship since the Stone Age, when man and dog first joined in the hunt. Dogs share our homes, food, and affection. As it turns out, they also share much of our genetic code and suffer from many of the same kinds of cancer. That's why the clinicians and scientists of the Animal Cancer Care and Research (ACCR) program at the University of Minnesota are joining with dogs in another type of hunt—the search for a cure for cancer in both dogs and humans.

"Veterinarians have known for years that humans and their dogs have many types of cancer in common—non-Hodgkin lymphoma, prostate, lung, breast, and bone cancer, and melanoma, to name a few," Dr. Jaime Modiano explains. "Yet, it wasn't until the dog genome was decoded in 2005 that scientists could begin to reap the rewards of studying cancer in both dogs and humans to their mutual benefit, bolstering the emerging field of comparative oncology."

Dr. Modiano directs the College of Veterinary Medicine's Animal Cancer Care and Research program and holds the Alvin S. and June Perlman Endowed Chair in Animal Oncology. He also is a member of the Masonic Cancer Center, Univ. of Minnesota, a National Cancer Institute–designated comprehensive cancer center recognized for its research, treatment, and education.

Breakthrough research (published in Chromosome Research in February 2008) arising from a highly productive and long-standing collaboration between Dr. Modiano and Dr. Matthew Breen, professor of genomics at North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, proved that cancers in the two species aren't just similar; they are virtually the same. At the University of Minnesota, research in comparative oncology bridges the College of Veterinary Medicine and the Masonic Cancer Center. The research will help advance the understanding of the biology of cancer and create new therapies to treat cancer in both humans and dogs. When the feline genome is decoded, cats will aid in the effort, too.

Bringing dogs into the cancer research mix offers huge benefits, chief among them speed. Dogs live into old age, but their life spans are compressed, which allows researchers to see the progress of cancer and the effects of different types of treatments 7 to 10 times faster than in humans. That allows rapid completion of clinical trials.

In addition to the FREE films, we will acknowledge a special message at our donations page if desired. Please provide your desired message with the donation. 
 
*Exclusive* GOTTA DANCE Jewelry

BUY YOUR GOTTA DANCE PENDANT OR PIN TODAY.

100% OF THE PROCEEDS BENEFIT CANINE CANCER!
 



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It is always the perfect time to treat yourself or the dog lovers in your life. And, you cannot go wrong with Dog jewelry for People by artists Julian Esquivel and Ted Fees, who have been creating quality jewelry designs for over 22 years. Their work is known for being substantial in weight, with much detail and dimensionality. All of their original designs are hand carved from wax, utilizing the lost wax casting process. After assembling your order, each piece is hand finished and hand buffed to a perfect surface finish.

The necklace pendant (or pin) is based on our GOTTA DANCE logo. It is 7/8 inches wide. This gorgeous piece is available in solid silver, 14K solid gold, and 14K gold vermeil. In 14K Solid Gold it is 5 grams in weight. This piece is available as a pendant (as shown) or as a pin, which would not have the bail connector at the top.

For those wanting a gold option, please note in comments whether you want the entire piece in yellow or white, or a two tone option: 1. Yellow Dog, White Person (as shown), or 2. White Dog, Yellow Person.

Get the same look of solid gold without the high cost. Vermeil is actually a plating of a certain heavy thickness that is placed over solid sterling silver. For reference,
our heavy gold and rhodium vermeil is 100 micro inches thick, and is a durable and an affordable option for a gold design with the same look as a 14K solid gold design. The genuine gold vermeil is very durable and will not discolor your skin or tarnish as it is real gold. Made to order, please allow 6 weeks for delivery.
 


 


Celebration of a 15 year Partnership

A February 2008 Rookie Update From Carolyn Scott  I have received so many emails of support and prayers I feel blessed. Thank you all for taking the time to write and keeping us in your thoughts. Rookie is doing GREAT! He greets me with a smile every morning as he leads me to kitchen for his breakfast. : )

As many of you know, Rookie was diagnosed with a spindle cell tumor on his right leg near his elbow a few months ago. Since Rookie was about to turn 15 I decided to have my vet remove the tumor but I didn’t want to put him through any further treatment. My vet removed the tumor and I happy to report there is no sign of it returning. At this time I decided to cancel my seminars and not schedule any others for awhile. I just couldn’t be away from home at this time.

Then about a month afterwards, when I woke up, I found Rookie completely paralyzed in both rear legs. I was devastated and thought this was the end BUT Rookie had other ideas. I took him to the vet where she x-rayed and explained to me he had arthritis and some other problems that were probably causing the paralysis. Our floors are tile with very little carpet and he could not walk without falling. I decide to follow the vets recommendation and put Rookie on bed rest for awhile with meds to see if he improved. Well, by golly he perked up and was a happy camper every day during this. After a couple of weeks he was able to master the tile and even throw in a few spins.

I have to admit I have been depressed a time or two but I have realized that Rookie is happy every day. So I decided to live in the moment as he does and do the same. I feel I have been so blessed to have this extra time with my sweet boy. His attitude is amazing everyday. The other day I let him out to roll in the grass by the pool and the next thing I knew he got this wild look in his eye and headed straight for the pool. Rookie loves to swim but even in Houston the water in a pool can be very cold at this time of year. I almost wasn’t able to stop him from jumping in. : )  Like I said, Rookie loves life and doesn’t realize he is 15 years old now. I am hoping it will warm up soon here and he can take a swim and once again enjoy one of his favorite activities.

Thank you all for your continued support and prayers. I cannot begin to express how much they have meant to me. Rookie will always be a eternal puppy with thoughts of freestyle, rolling in the grass, eating and swimming in our pool. He thinks everyday is his best day and I am trying hard to do the same.

July 15, 2008 Update  Carolyn has asked to have a special message relayed, which can be found here.

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