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September 8, 2007

French Bulldog is Catalyst for Investigation of Microchip-Cancer Connection

French Bulldog Léon
(Léon's photograph has been reproduced with the permission of the owner)

Could a microchip implant like the VeriChip cause cancer? A French Bulldog named Léon was the catalyst for new questions about the safety of RFID implants.

One year ago, Léon's owner contacted me with startling news. She believed that her dog's cancerous tumor and his untimely death might have been caused by a microchip implant.

This was not just idle talk by a grieving dog owner grasping at straws to figure out why she had been robbed of her constant companion. This was a gutsy lady who refused to allow the vet to simply cremate the evidence.

This lady prefers to be known only by her first name of "Jeanne," so the Associated Press couldn't credit her properly as the original source for some of the explosive information in its article "Chip Implants Linked to Animal Tumors," but I have the leeway in this forum to share the behind-the-scenes story.

Jeanne spent a small fortune trying to cure her ailing French bulldog, Léon, after he was diagnosed with cancer in 2004. When medical interventions failed and Léon passed away, she decided to hunt for the reason the fatal tumor in his body was attached to the glass-encapsulated microchip that had been injected into his neck for identification purposes.

Jeanne located a team of researchers in Italy who agreed to test tissue samples from a biopsy of Léon's tumor to determine if the microchip was implicated in his aggressive cancer. They documented their findings in a 2006 paper entitled, “Fibrosarcoma with Typical Features of Postinjection Sarcoma at Site of Microchip Implant in a Dog: Histologic and Immunohistochemical Study.” The full text is available online at: http://www.vetpathology.org/cgi/content/full/43/4/545.

Since Léon's suspicious cancer was not enough evidence to prove microchip implants were a threat, Jeanne decided to search for other proof of a link. She unearthed scholarly animal studies documenting a possible chip-cancer link and posted several of these at the website that she formed as a tribute to Léon:


Jeanne informed us of this research and even faxed us copies of these studies as they were difficult to obtain. Fortunately, my Spychips co-author Dr. Katherine Albrecht had access to the Harvard library and was able to take Jeanne's work further, analyzing additional studies that seemed to support a cancer-microchip link in animals.

Sometime later, AP Reporter Todd Lewan entered the picture, eager for an exclusive. He used his press credentials to gain further information, tie up the story with a perfect, documented bow, and broadcast it to media outlets around the world. He and Katherine tirelessly pursued the truth that you can now find published in the explosive AP story.

I promised Jeanne that Katherine and I would share the whole story, and that Léon would be remembered for his contribution. Here's to you, Jeanne and Léon! I'm so sorry it took tragedy for this information to be brought to light. I applaud your tenacity, bravery, and amazing research skills.

- Liz McIntyre

Posted by liz at September 8, 2007 2:08 PM


Being a retired a.r.n.p. I have always believed the microchipping used in dogs was a test run for using them on humans.They could be used in many ways,mind control, the spread of fatal disease,or chronic disease.I believe the aides virus, ebola virus, and many others have been produced by our own government for use against thier on people.

Posted by: Pamala at September 9, 2007 2:14 PM

A very special thanks to Kathryn, Liz, Todd, Jeanne and Leon for highlighting this very tragic & yet explosive story.

I became instantly suspicious of the microchip implant when they first began pushing them in the 1990's for equines in the UK. For horses the chip is completely unnecessary, there has been kinder & safer ID alternatives available for the last 30 years!

Yet the microchip mania has since spread like wildfire to many animal welfare centers & shelters.

The chip is mandatory for anyone who wishes to adopt a rescue pet from many UK centers, even for rabbits! Lets hope with this latest news that vets & rescue centers will abandon the chip completely.

Only one of my animals is chipped, a rescued dog. The area behind her head always feels very warm & with this new evidence I shall be making inquiries with my vet to have this horrible thing removed.

Let's hope that all implanted humans will have the sense to get these wicked things removed
from their bodies ASAP

They are not safe for animals and not safe for humans.

Thank you for all that you do

Posted by: Bev at September 10, 2007 5:08 AM

Of course, if people were more interested in RIGHTS - human and animal - then we wouldn't have this problem in the first place. I feel so much sorrow for Jeanne and the dog, Leon, who she loved so much, and I wish her relief from the grief and anger she is feeling.

Posted by: Mandy at September 10, 2007 10:02 AM

I also have a rescue dog. She has had skin problems ever since I got her. I also noted hot spots on her. Can these chips be removed????

Posted by: A. Finley at September 10, 2007 8:55 PM

With the new light shed on implanted RFID chips potentially causing cancer, is there any known investigation into the safety of other RFID chips in a proximity of human tissue.

In particular I am thinking of RFID chips in clothing tags (That Shirt Tag is very close to the spine) RFID tagged cards carried in wallets all day long, Company badges with RFID technology, and other such items.

These devices are right up against human tissue for significant periods of time.

Posted by: Craig at September 11, 2007 2:53 AM

My pet was chipped by a veterinary student in my family without my consent. There was no reasoning with her about the civic or ethical implications of her actions. Consequently, my difficult personal experience has lead me to the following observations and recommendations on how to further the RFID dialog.

To stop sophisticated product marketing from brainwashing veterinary students, an educational campaign must be targeted to the heads and faculty of veterinary institutions and professional associations. In addition, veterinary schools should devote a semester to the topic of ethics and critical thinking. The idea would be to equip students with the ability to discern marketing tactics, and to empower them to resist fallacious conclusions that are derived from "selective science" marketing ploys that downplay risks even as they upsell benefits. Veterinary students must be taught, at minimum, to anticipate a barrage of product marketing throughout their careers, and to that end they must be cautioned that there are no products or technologies that are 100 percent appropriate 100 percent of the time in 100 percent of all cases.

It is widely known, by way of comparison, that drug reps for the pharmaceutical industry are handsomely compensated for their efforts to convince medical doctors of the usefulness of new drugs or surgical devices over existing products. Veterinarians are subjected to the same pressures, but without the benefit of a dialog regarding the conflict of interest that is generated when marketing is targeted not at the public at large, but at the sources they are less likely to question (their own peers and professional societies). Veterinarians, too, rely on peer groups and professional societies for verification and reinforcement of any given position — from the supposed nutritional infallibility of pelleted bird feed to the necessity of RFID chipping as the "responsible" and "loving" action to take in defense of one's dogs and cats. To provide a counterbalance to the ethically- and scientifically-adulterating influence of businesses that serve the industry, professional organizations, therefore, should adopt a code of ethics that encourages members to maintain a sense of objectivity.

Whether one discusses human medicine or animal, the same bottom line applies: What seems perfectly acceptable in the present day will one day become outdated as new research, techniques and methodologies prove safer and more effective. One way to keep it in perspective is to remember that cutting-edge science once believed that the world was flat. Good leaders, doctors and veterinarians, therefore, realize that there is no "final word" to be had on any subject, and because they remain open to change they remain on the lookout for new developments, additional studies, etc. Such professionals, be they MDs or DVMs, will remain professionally relevant and aware well into retirement. By contrast, poor leaders, doctors and veterinarians are those who adopt a rigid mentality that no further research or questions should be asked once a given course of action has been deemed "safe" or "appropriate" at some early point in their education or careers. Arrogance of this sort is a recipe for outmoded science and poor treatment methodologies in short order. Those who are most at risk of self-inflicted irrelevancy are seemingly those who enter the profession with a deadly duo of authoritarian attitudes — an unwillingness to question their professional peers and educators on the one hand, and an unwillingness to listen to the concerns of "unqualified" clients, media or family members on the other. These are the people I fear the most — for they too often become a direct threat to the personal liberties of others because they are unable or unwilling to place themselves in the other person's shoes.

When I shared this site with the family member who chipped my pet, she immediately retorted that you can't believe everything you read on the Internet. When I said that the anti-RFID organization is lead by a Harvard Ph.D. with a like-minded sociopolitical/religious philosophy, she still found cause to dismiss my RFID concerns out of hand. When I provided the Web site URLs to research the subject for herself, she refused. This, sadly, is the way a lot of people think and react. When a subject threatens one's sense of complacency, there are many who will not make an intellectually honest attempt to get to the bottom of an issue.

I believe that many threats to our liberties stem from a common source: An education system that no longer teaches students what informed citizenry entails or the invaluable purpose critical thinking skills serve in a democratic Republic. This is the same educational system, meanwhile, that hires history, political science and civics teachers that do not read newspapers and cannot convey to students why it might be important to keep up with current events. In this climate of media/civic/current events illiteracy, we end up with a populous that are ripe for authoritarian manipulation at the hands of politicians, lobbyists, media pundits and marketers.

Authoritarian individuals cannot listen without interrupting or diverting the topic, will not "admit" new evidence into their thinking — such that they almost never confess a mistake or change their minds — and as a general rule will discredit anyone who has arrived at a different conclusion than their own as little more than crackpots, alarmists and know-nothings. These folks may have thick heads and even harder hearts, but those of us who still care about the future of this nation should not give up our attempts to start an honest dialog. Any coward can dismiss a question outright, but the courageous will not only ask the tough questions but accept the answers wherever they may lead.

Posted by: anon at September 11, 2007 4:12 AM

It makes me sick to see technology like this used without any safeguards in place and legislators too stupid to understand why we would "make a law when there's no problem yet".


Keep up the good work. I will continue to blog your information and spread the word :)

Posted by: Jeremy at September 11, 2007 7:30 AM

I am curious how many chips have been implanted world wide and how many animals have been reported to have this chip created cancer. Also, I am puzzled why these test results by Dow Chemical app. 11 years ago were not offered up sooner. If we are so concerned now,have we not put millions of animals and humans combined, in immediate life threatening danger. Who is responsible for not coming forward earlier. Maybe 11 years earlier?

Posted by: DB at September 11, 2007 2:33 PM

It truely makes you wonder how many animals have received malignant tumors and are micro-chipped. Are the numbers really true - or undiscovered? My dog happens to be one of them! She died and there was nothing anyone could do - it grew too fast and when it was discovered it was too late! Vet believes it formed and grew under three weeks and she only showed difficultly within a week and there was not enough time regardless of what money could buy. Certainly could not buy time to save her! She was an English Bulldog - that will be missed forever.

Posted by: A. Gruttadauria at September 12, 2007 12:26 AM

The city of Huntington Beach California is going to require that all pets be micro chipped!!! I have included the link to the news article from the Orange County Register.


Posted by: Samantha at September 12, 2007 1:24 AM


Family member or not, if someone had done something so invasive to any pet of mine, they damned well would be paying to have it removed. Heaven help them if they ever try something like that with a child of mine. They would also be perona non grata.

Posted by: Joseph at September 12, 2007 10:21 AM

I just had my two dogs "chipped" last week. Since the cancer-link story broke, I want the chips removed and sent an e-mail to Verichip to tell them that I am sending them the bills. Will be interesting to see what happens. I will be happy to let the media know about this effort. Perhaps the Washington Post will want to follow up on their story. The FDA has approved several unsafe medications over the past few years. This is fully documented. These are just the facts if you wish to post them.

Posted by: Lila at September 12, 2007 10:38 AM

FYI... after speaking with the vets office who originally micro-chipped my bulldog - I am more prone to believe that the numbers are not being reported properly. I asked if they would be responsible in reporting it and they said it was nonsense that they have never heard of such a thing with the tumors and micro chips. She told me they would never put something in our animals if they believed they could be harmed. She told me it could not do harm it was the size of a piece of rice and it is placed under the skin. I told them I believe that is true they would not intentionally push something on us if they knew of any problems - however I also believe that there are numbers that go unreported. Perfect example they had no intentions of reporting her after I called when she initially past away to inform them. If they did not report her who would? They inserted the object shouldn't they keep track and do their own study? When my dog died the vet was wowed because he felt she was so young and never seen such a thing. Maybe all dogs are different and maybe it could be certain breeds or sizes, or the age of the dog. Regardless we will never allow it, again.

Posted by: A. Gruttadauria at September 12, 2007 12:18 PM

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