The five-year-old golden retriever was diagnosed with cancer three years ago and had his front leg amputated to save his life.
Named after Fremantle Dockers star Michael Barlow, the much-loved Zylstra family pet will take part in his third Million Paws Walk in May – although this time around he will have the help of a set of wheels.
Owner Robyn Zylstra said Barlow’s condition meant she was even more determined to include him in the RSPCA fundraising event.
“We’re well aware that not all dogs are as lucky as Barlow and have families that can look after them and pay their vet bills,” she said.
“If what happened to Barlow had happened to a stray dog they wouldn’t have had a hope without an organisation like the RSPCA, so we’re really big supporters of the work that they do.”
Barlow completed his first Millions Paws Walk before his leg was amputated but struggled the second time around post-operation, prompting the Zylstra family to purchase a trolley for his third attempt.
“As he is getting older he is becoming less active and gets tired easily so we bought a trolley… and we’re planning on pushing him along inside it,” Mrs Zylstra said.
She hopes to get some of the brothers and sisters of Barlow involved in the walk too. Barlow was from a litter of 10 puppies.
“We got Barlow from a friend who bred retrievers and Barlow’s litter see each other and their mother quite often,” she said.
“He was actually born on the day of the drawn AFL grand final in 2010 so he was bound to have a football name.
“That was also the year that Michael Barlow broke his leg which might have been a bit of an omen.”
Anyone who would like to take part in the Million Paws Walk can register at www.millionpawswalk.com.au.
Early bird rates are available from now until April 8. The walk is on Sunday, May 15.