Petco Foundation invests in LSU School of Veterinary Medicine to support cancer treatment, disaster response, shelter medicine, and community outreach

Members of the SVM and Petco

For Immediate Release: November 2, 2020

BATON ROUGE, LA—The LSU School of Veterinary Medicine has received a $75,000 grant award from the Petco Foundation, a national non-profit organization working to lead and inspire change for animals. This grant award continues the Foundation’s support to help pet parents with the cost of pet cancer treatment, bringing their total commitment to over $5.2 million to date to the nation’s top veterinarian oncology universities.

The Petco Foundation also committed to providing the LSU SVM with $275,000 to purchase a mobile clinic to be used for disaster training and management, shelter medicine student rotations, and community outreach projects. The mobile clinic will be managed by the LSU SVM Veterinary Teaching Hospital so it can be used where it is needed most.

“We are excited to receive these awards from Petco Foundation,” said Joel D. Baines, VMD, PhD, dean. “The $75,000 dollar contribution will make cancer treatment for pets possible when this life prolonging treatment would not be available otherwise. The new mobile unit will not only allow us to more efficiently rescue animals from disasters, but will greatly augment  training of our students in rescue techniques, in shelter medicine, and to  improve animal health and welfare in underserved  communities.”

On Wednesday, Oct. 14, representatives from Petco, Petco Foundation, and Blue Buffalo toured the Louisiana State University School of Veterinary Medicine's Oncology Center and discussed the continued need for this lifesaving support. "With all the strides being made in the veterinary oncology field increasing treatment options for our pets, our goal is to make these lifesaving treatments available to more pets and their pet parents," said Susanne Kogut, president of the Petco Foundation. "University treatment funds to support pet cancer did not universally exist prior to our creation of this support. Not only are these funds changing the lives of pets and pet parents, but it is improving the outlook for our veterinarian professionals who can help even more pets when costs might otherwise preclude such treatment."

The Petco Foundation, in partnership with Blue Buffalo, are continuing their annual campaign to raise funds for pet cancer but expanding efforts to include raising funds for other critical pet health care needs. According to a study by the University of Tennessee's Access to Veterinary Care, seventy-four percent of pet owners reported not being able to afford sick care, with middle class participants as likely to cite financial barriers as lower-income participants. From now through October 25, the public can help pets receive treatment for pet cancer and other lifesaving care by donating at Petco or online at

To learn more about the Petco Foundation and its efforts to provide lifesaving treatment to pets, visit and follow along on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

About the Petco Foundation

At the Petco Foundation, we believe that every animal deserves to live its best life. Since 1999, we've invested more than $280 million in lifesaving animal welfare work to make that happen. With our more than 4,000 animal welfare partners, we inspire and empower communities to make a difference by investing in adoption and medical care programs, spay and neuter services, pet cancer research, service and therapy animals, and numerous other lifesaving initiatives. We also partner with Petco stores and animal welfare organizations across the country to increase pet adoptions. So far, we've helped more than 6.5 million pets find their new loving families, and we're just getting started. Visit to learn more about how you can get involved.

About Blue Buffalo Company

Based in Wilton, CT, Blue Buffalo is the nation's leading natural pet food company, and provides natural foods and treats for dogs and cats under its BLUE Life Protection Formula, BLUE Wilderness, BLUE Basics, BLUE Freedom and BLUE Natural Veterinary Diet lines. Paying tribute to its founding mission, the company is a leading sponsor of pet cancer awareness and critical studies of pet cancer, health, treatment and nutrition at top veterinary medical schools across the United States. For more information about Blue Buffalo, visit

The LSU School of Veterinary Medicine is one of only 32 veterinary schools in the U.S. and the only one in Louisiana. The LSU SVM is dedicated to improving the lives of people and animals through education, research and service. We teach. We heal. We discover. We protect.


On October 14, the Petco Foundation made a donation to the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine. From left, Paula Bamford, Petco vice president of veterinary services; Alexis Boyd, oncology veterinary technician; Jason Heffelfinger, Petco senior vice president of pet services; Bonnie Boudreaux, DVM, DACVIM, associate dean of student affairs and professor of veterinary medical oncology; Susanne Kogut, Petco Foundation president; Ron Coughlin, Petco CEO; Jayme Looper, DVM (LSU SVM 1997), DACVIM, small animal hospital director and associate professor of veterinary radiation oncology; Joel Baines, VMD, PhD, dean; Tracy Evans, senior director of development; and Mike Nuzzo, Petco chief operating officer.

Media Contacts

Ginger Guttner, Communications Manager

LSU School of Veterinary Medicine

225-578-9922 or 

Jennifer Perez

Petco Foundation