Four-legged friend saved my life

Owner Dr Claire Guest and winner of the Blue cross's medal,  Daisy. PNL-141120-095925001
Owner Dr Claire Guest and winner of the Blue cross's medal, Daisy. PNL-141120-095925001

A cancer detection dog whose sense of smell saved her owner’s life has been awarded a medal for her pioneering work.

Scientist Claire Guest was training Daisy to detect the deadly disease when the golden Labrador used its paw to point to her chest where a tumour was growing.

Dr Guest, chief executive of Milton Keynes-based charity Medical Detection Dogs, said: “Daisy kept nuzzling and pawing at my chest one day, which really alarmed me.

“I got it checked out and was told I had early stage breast cancer.

“Fortunately I was able to have it removed, but if it wasn’t for Daisy it would have gone undetected for much longer and could have been more serious.”

Since then, 10-year-old Daisy has gone on to save hundreds of lives by sniffing 6,500 samples and detecting more than 550 cases of cancer.

This week, bosses at pet charity Blue Cross, which awards animals that have changed or saved someone’s life, have recognised Daisy’s achievements with a special medal.

Steve Goody, Blue Cross deputy chief executive, said: “The Blue Cross Medal is awarded to animals that have changed or saved someone’s life.

“All the judges on the medal panel were really touched by Daisy’s remarkable story and the incredible difference she has made.

“Cancer affects the lives of thousands of people and Daisy has made a huge contribution to the diagnosis and early treatment of cancers – she’s a very deserving medal recipient”

Daisy now helps train a team of 12 dogs at Medical Detection Dogs and is a senior consultant for the UK’s first ever trial using canines to detect breast cancer.

Dr Guest, who is now in remission, added: “I am absolutely thrilled that Daisy has been awarded the Blue Cross Medal. It’s a huge honour and I am so proud of her.

“Working with dogs and using their incredible sense of smell to help fight cancer can make a real difference to the lives of so many people.”