Otis is a very fortunate golden retriever who was in his golden years when bone cancer pain threatened to shorten his life. His family was worried — nobody wants to watch their beloved family pet suffer. But a promising new therapy Otis was given as a participant in a clinical trial aimed at pet dogs has helped Otis lengthen his life, thanks to a local company named Advanced Targeting Systems (ATS).

Otis’s brain no longer knows it is in pain from the cancer, but he can still feel normal acute pain — for example, if he bumps his head or has a cut or bruise, he’ll feel it and if needed, can be treated with traditional pain care. His growing tumor doesn’t seem to bother him.

Bone cancer at advanced stages often leads to animals being euthanized because it is causes a great amount of pain. ATS believes that there are better options, and pain shouldn’t have to be a life-threatening disease for your pet. They created SP-SAP to prevent chronic pain signals from reaching the brain.

ATS’s results were published in the November 2013 issue of the journal Anesthesiology, finding that pet dogs receiving SP-SAP displayed significantly less pain than dogs receiving traditional pain care, with no visible side effects and an improved quality of life.

ATS now hopes to perform similar clinical research trials with human subjects.