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Loss and Found

Daisy and her owner Tracey Marshall.

Tracey Marshall has had her share of heartache. The Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire woman's beloved Bullmastiff, Louis, had to be put to sleep after being diagnosed with a brain tumor. Her son Jack, age 6, also lost his battle with a brain tumor a few months later. As sadness spread throughout the family, they decided to take on Daisy, another Bullmastiff, whose help could never be measured.

"No parent should have to lose a beloved child and losing our family pet in the same year just added to our misery," says Tracey. "The house was so quiet and lonely. Daisy helped to bring love and laughter back into our home and without her I don't know how we would have had the strength to go on. People underestimate just how much healing the love of a dog can give, in even the most tragic of times."

Daisy slowly helped bring love and laughter back into the home. Before Daisy, Tracy hadn't left her home for months. With Daisy's love, Tracey was able to better weather the storm and emerge from the darkness. The mastiff had brought sunshine into their lives.

Because of her devotion to her owner, Daisy was nominated for the Crufts Friends For Life Award for 2013 and became a finalist in the competition. According to Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, "The dogs nominated for this year's Friends for Life competition help to remind us what it is that makes the relationship between dog and man so very special. Each and every one of the finalists has helped to change and save lives, and can teach us all a lesson about loyalty, companionship and bravery."

The Bullmastiff was up against four other dogs in the award competition and as a finalist, was awarded 750 pounds ($1,136 in US dollars) to donate to the family's favorite charity: the Jack Marshall Brain Tumor Fund.