Suffolk: Martha beats cancer to become top dog

Martha has won the best veteran in show at the Suffolk Show.

Martha has won the best veteran in show at the Suffolk Show. - Credit: Archant

She’s beaten cancer and has the scars to prove it.

Martha has won the best veteran in show at the Suffolk Show. Owners Rodney and Isabel Eastall, pictu

Martha has won the best veteran in show at the Suffolk Show. Owners Rodney and Isabel Eastall, pictured in Mendlesham with Martha, were told Martha would not survive cancer 2 years ago but has now scooped the award. - Credit: Archant

And now Martha the Airedale Terrier is once again top dog by winning a top award at the Suffolk Show.

It was only a couple of years ago that the eight-year-old prized pet of Rodney and Isabel Eastall was diagnosed with a histolytic sarcoma in her neck.

She had to undergo surgery and chemotherapy but has beaten the odds and last week was hailed the Best Veteran in Show at the two-day event held at Trinity Park, on the outskirts of Ipswich. Mr and Mrs Eastall, who run the Daedal Dog Grooming business from their home in Ducksen Road, Mendlesham, near Stowmarket, are delighted by the turn of events.

It was Christmas 2010 when they found out the terrible news about Martha which led to her being taken to the Veterinary Referral Centre for Cancer, at Basildon, to see Dr Susan North and Dr Henry L’Eplattenier.

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She had surgery, which was a success, and a course of chemotherapy, but her immune system crashed which was a very worrying time for her owners as she was susceptible to infections.

Paul Canham, from Stowe Vet Group, in Stowmarket, helped Martha, who was also a Crufts winner in 2006 in the Post Graduate Bitch Class, through this stage of her illness and she has since made a remarkable recovery.

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Isabel said: “Two Christmas’s ago we were told that Martha had cancer and we would have her for only weeks but she has made a remarkable recovery.

“Sadly many pets die of cancer but with the extensive veterinary treatment and knowledge that is now available this need not always be the case.

“It was wonderful for Martha to win the title at the Suffolk Show and we were thrilled.

“She is very, very special and she took everything on the chin during her illness.

“She did not turn a hair and she just accepted everything that was done to her.

“She’s a remarkable dog and her attitude to life is fantastic.

“The treatment she has received has been wonderful and the vets have been really brilliant; we can’t thank them enough.”

Rodney, 55, and Isabel, 53, have had to pay out up to £5,000 for Martha’s treatment but much of it has been funded by an insurance policy.

At the Stowmarket vets Mr Canham said: “Martha is such a gentle dog and she has taken her surgeries and chemotherapy in her stride.”

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