THOMPSONVILLE, Mich. (Aug. 12, 2022) – They say a dog is a man’s best friend, but Crystal Mountain’s Resort K9 Ambassador was everyone’s best friend. Fisher had the pleasure of being the first to greet guests at check-in, taste test the ice cream at the Beach House, feel out the greens on the golf courses and check the conditions out on the slopes – and it was all caught on camera by his owner Jeff Rabidoux.
“Photoshoots were Fisher’s favorite part about being the K9 ambassador,” said Rabidoux, who works for Crystal Mountain Realty. “Since birth he has been the subject in my lens, and as he grew older he began to associate the camera with adventure, knowing he would be the main character everyone wanted to meet. Fisher loved meeting new people.”
When Fisher passed away from cancer on July 22, just a few weeks shy of his tenth birthday (today), his loss was felt near and far. Those who knew him, and those who never met him but followed him on social media, remember him by sharing their favorite photos and memories.
One handwritten letter read, “Our family has been coming to Crystal Mountain for five years and every year we looked forward to seeing Fisher and taking cool pictures with him.”
Another note read, “Ever since meeting him for the first time we made it our routine to check and see if Fisher was working whenever we came to Crystal Mountain to bike or ski.”
To carry on Fisher’s best quality, spreading joy, Rabidoux teamed up with Benzie Sunrise Rotary Club’s Foundation and a local animal hospital to create the Fisher Fund. The donations will be used to help families pay for critical medical services for their pet that they otherwise may not be able to afford.
“Thanks to caring individuals, this is one of the ways Fisher can continue to leave an impression, and spread joy, to others,” Rabidoux said. “His membership in the Morris Animal Foundation Golden Retriever Lifetime Study will also continue to make a difference.”
The Morris Animal Foundation Golden Retriever Lifetime Study is one of the largest, most comprehensive prospective canine health studies in the United States. The Study’s purpose is to identify the nutritional, environmental, lifestyle and genetic risk factors for cancer and other diseases in dogs. There are more than 3,000 golden retrievers enrolled. Fisher was hero #430.
“Every year Fish would have an extensive physical examination with full blood work and nail clippings, and I would fill out a detailed questionnaire about every facet of his life; from the surfaces he walked and slept on, the products we used in our home and yard, to behavioral questions,” Rabidoux said. “And when he was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia about 2.5 years ago, the vet visits became more frequent with ultrasounds and blood work, but Fish was a model patient. They loved him there.”
As part of the study, data is submitted from each dog’s necropsy after they pass. Fisher’s participation in the study will help dogs around the world, and the Fisher Fund can help pets in northern Michigan.
The Fisher Fund is a GoFundMe account via Benzie Sunrise Rotary Foundation.