To ring in the Chinese New Year, The Puppy Up Foundation is announcing their first project of the Year of the Dog: The Power of Companions, a monument to honor the powerful bond between pets and people.

The inspiration for this project came from the Founder of Puppy Up Luke Robinson, who after losing his dog Malcolm to cancer walked over 4,000 miles to bring awareness to canine cancer and its similarities to human cancer. Along his travels Robinson met many pet parents who had lost their companions to cancer and like him they were inspired to do great things in memory of their beloved pets.

“The Year of the Dog is the perfect time to recognize those we honor by building a monument,” states Mr. Robinson. The Puppy Up Foundation will be working with the National Ornamental Metal Museum in Memphis for the forging of the monument.  Since Robinson was born under the same sign and the Metal Museum is located in the same city as the Foundation’s headquarters, he feels that this is a partnership that was destined to be.

Starting February 16th, the Puppy Up Foundation is calling for artists to submit concepts for the monument. “It should be a massive monument to the beauty and spirit of companionship – both in life and loss” said Robinson. Submissions will end on March 15th, after which there will be a selection process to choose the finalists and then the public will be asked to vote for their favorite design.

corten soldierWhen submitting ideas, please keep the following in mind:

  • This picture is only meant as an example
  • The concept must convey both life and loss into the theme
  • The dimensions are roughly 10’L x 5’W x 10’H, including the foundation
  • Material is mainly Corten Steel
  • The use of positive and negative space is encouraged
  • Please include ideas for the ground around the monument (sustainable garden, water feature, lighted recognition panel, and memorial pavers)

Please email submissions to info@puppyup.org.

Contest Guidelines

  • One concept drawing per person. Additional concepts will be $25.00 per entry
  • JPEG only and file size must be at least 1MB
  • When submitting your entry please include your name, email address and phone number
  • Please include an essay (no more than 250 words) about the inspiration behind your concept
  • Accepting submissions between February 16 through 6:00 pm EDT March 15, 2018
  • March 16, 2018 the selection process and voting  will begin
  • More detailed information coming soon

What’s Next?

We’ll be posting our ‘Executive Summary’ soon which is our working document that includes budget as well as important timelines. Next week, I’ll be filming at the Metal Museum to introduce you to the forge and the cast of characters.

“It’ll be a massive monument to the beauty and spirit of companionship – both in life and loss.  And anyone can submit their concept for it.” – Luke Robinson

Puppy Up & Get to Drawing!

–        Yer Two Dogs (Hudson & Me) & Indiana though he was born the year of the Moose!


The Puppy Up Foundation, one of the largest pet and people cancer foundations, was established to support comparative oncology and educate the public about common links between cancer in pets and people. Puppy Up mobilizes support and raises funds for translational cancer studies that benefit both humans and canines.

The organization was born in June 2010 when Luke Robinson concluded a 2,000-mile walk with his dogs Murphy and Hudson to honor the loss of his dog Malcolm to cancer. They walked from town to town, sharing Malcolm’s story and educating people about cancer in dogs, and a nationwide grassroots movement emerged. Today, The Puppy Up Foundation hosts annual events such as the nationwide Puppy Up walks in which dogs and their people walk in their communities nationwide to raise awareness and funds for comparative oncology and to educate pet parents about the early warning signs of canine cancer.