Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Kippie's Health Clearances

The little guy is two already (of course) and while he'd had preliminary OFA x-rays taken, it was time to get his finals done. OFA processed his films in record time - they received the images on 7/10 and I had results back on 7/15! Kip's hips were rated OFA good and his elbows OFA normal. Kip passed his eye and heart clearances back in March at the Salt City Cluster. Which just left the Optigen/Antegene genetic tests - which I sent out at the beginning of June - all three genetic tests came back clear/normal (prcd-PRA, PRA1 and Ichthyosis) meaning even if he were bred to a carrier or affected he could never produce an affected puppy (Teller is also clear for all three genetic conditions).

What does that mean? Kip now meets all the criteria put forth by our breed club's (Golden Retriever Club of America) code of ethics to be used for breeding. If you are in the market for a puppy you NEED to go to www.offa.org and look up the parents of your potential puppy. If they do not have CHIC next to their names their owners have not completed all of the testing that the parent club as determined are required for breeding stock. The GRCA has not yet updated the COE to include the genetic tests, but honestly puppy buyers need to be demanding answers to these tests too. At least one parent  should be triple clear or both parents need to be tested. That is not to say that we shouldn't breed carriers of these conditions (carriers have one 'bad' copy of the gene and will never be affected by the condition, but could provide a 'bad' copy of these genes to their offspring) - but we need to make sure we breed carriers to clears so that we never produce affecteds. If you're at all a biology/genetics geek you know what I'm talking about - if you aren't a genetics geek go read about Gregor Mendel and his peas, play with some punnet squares and look at genetic inheritance on a very small scale (Ab x Ab).

What doesn't it mean? There are no guarantees in life or in dog breeding. It's possible that an OFA good hipped dog bred to an OFA good hipped bitch will produce a dog with less than ideal or dysplastic hips. BUT it's all about hedging our bets and doing our best by the breed and the dogs we love. As for Kip? He'd really like to go swimming some more tonight as he only got to swim for 45 minutes tonight before he got kicked off the pool deck. Tough break kiddo.

No comments: