Committed to the improvement of the breed by breeding for health, temperament and better structure in dogs that have the ability to herd.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

4 Generations of healthy, happy dogs and testing

I read somewhere recently that there is someone claiming to have generations of tested dogs in their pedigree of an animal they own. Upon looking at the pedigree there is ONE dog in each of the generations that was tested for hips. The vertical pedigree (including siblings, half siblings, aunts, uncles etc) has very few animals that have been tested for anything, let alone hips.

Its been said before by several people that although you may test your own stock, the proof is in the pedigree. Meaning that its fine and dandy you test your own stock for things, but what about the litter mates, parents etc of the dogs? Its true I have dogs that are tested for all known Cardigan issues. I do however realize that most of their relatives in the pedigree are not tested for much of anything. I also do not rant and rave about having a perfectly healthy dog, nor do I know what the relatives are for any of these tests. I'd hate to be false advertising my dogs that might kick me in the butt later! And as a general rule, CWC breeders and owners typically take the course of "no testing" for various reasons....1. because they don't believe in it. 2. they don't believe in the current tests that are available, 3. they cannot afford it, 4. they test and then get bad results so therefore don't publicly show the results and then decide they don't believe in the test anymore.

On a side note:

I will also say that I am one of, if not the only known Upper Midwest CWC *person* (soon to be breeder) that is testing their breeding stock for ALL known health tests in the breed. And not cosmetic things like fluff or little 'e' gene. I may even start to do spine xrays to track the beginnings of IVDD that is in our breed. I can't find anyone else's dogs on the OFA website that have as many health clearances as my girls do. Justice and Mitcham and Daisy will have their tests added as their ages allow. I'd be happy to show any certificates too of them that you may desire to see. So yes, even though they may not have it to back them up in their pedigree, my dogs will be tested and will continue to be tested from here on out. Not just the show pups, but all the pups. You can call me on it down the road if I don't >:)


**

I do however own a dog that is tested clear or passing for four generations for sure, nearly completely 5 (if you aren't counting him as a generation) :) And he's not a Corgi :)

His name is Mitcham :)

The Briard people have it together.

With only a fraction of the animals that that CWC have and only 40 registered litters a year in the US, they are a tiny breed population wise. They have 209 dogs registered with CHIC numbers. Cardigans have 13. Isn't that just crazy?

With Mitcham's 4 generation pedigree, all of his ancestors were tested for at least hips, if not a host of other things, except for his Great Grandmother on his dam's side's parents. Otherwise even most of the 5th generation that I looked at was also tested for hips.

And there is nothing to hide. Look at all the half siblings, full siblings, parents etc. They have TONS of animals listed.....which is even more awesome because the breed is so small itself...MUCH smaller than the CWC here in the US at least. OFA is awesome for being a pedigree and health research tool. OFA is a great source for a vertical health pedigree. I encourage you look at Mitcham's pedigree:

All links should be active and sent to the right OFA web page.



Sire
CH Dior Elan Veni Vedi Viici

OFA Good,
Elbows Normal
Sire
AM/CAN CH Dior Aigner Made to Order HIC

CHIC
OFA Excellent
Elbows Normal
Thyroid Normal
Cardiac Normal
CERF Normal
CSNB clear

Sire
CH Deja Vu Aigner For Pete's Sake

OFA Good
Sire
CH Deja Vu Woodbine Cryn Out Loud ROM
OFA Excellent
Dam
CH Deja Vu Ease On Down The Road HT ROM
OFA Excellent
Dam
Mon Jovis Eillie de I'Etat d'Or
OFA Good
CERF Normal

Sire
CH Aigner Added Attraction
OFA Good
Dam
CH Mon Jovis Amber
OFA Good
Dam
CH Elan Dior Rain in Spain

OFA Good
Elbows Normal
CERF Normal
Sire
CH Dior Rainbeard On the Ball
CHIC
OFA Excellent
Elbows Normal
Cardiac Normal
CERF Normal
CSNB Clear

Sire
CH Blackwater's Hard to be Humble CDX HIC
OFA Fair
Dam
CH Dior Aigner My Oh My CD NA HIC
CHIC
OFA Excellent
Elbows Normal
Thyroid Normal
CERF Normal
CSNB Clear

Dam
CH Charmant La Belle Amie HIC
OFA Good
CERF Normal

Sire
CH Aigner Eye of the Tiger HIC
OFA Fair
CERF Normal

Dam
CH Phydeaux Fairest of Them All HIC

Dam
CH Monami Dior Uma Neta Do Pele
CHIC
OFA Good
Elbows Normal
Thyroid Normal
Cardiac Normal
CERF Normal
CSNB Clear

Sire
CH Dior Monami Simply Irresistable
OFA Good
Sire
CH Dior Rainbeard On the Ball
CHIC
OFA Excellent
Elbows Normal
Cardiac Normal
CERF Normal
CSNB Clear
Sire
CH Blackwater's Hard to be Humble CDX HIC
OFA Fair
Dam
CH Dior Aigner My Oh My CD NA HIC
CHIC
OFA Excellent
Elbows Normal
Thyroid Normal
CERF Normal
CSNB Clear
Dam
CH Mon Jovis Dior O You Beautiful Doll CD
CHIC
OFA Good
Elbows Normal
Thyroid Normal
CERF NOrmal
CSNB Clear

Sire
CH Mon Jovis Forever Mine
OFA Good
Dam
CH Sentinelle DejaVu Leapinlizard PT
OFA Good
Dam
CH Mon Jovis Nine to Five
OFA Excellent
Sire
CH Mon Jovis Deja Vu Johnny B Good
OFA Good
Sire
CH Deja Vu Woodbine Cryn Out Loud ROM
OFA Excellent
Dam
CH Picador Temptress
OFA Good
Dam
CH Picador Temptress
OFA Good
Sire
NUCH Fin.W-86 NORV87 NV8889 SV90 Virage Vendetta of Picador
Dam
Rafiki's Cassiopeia

So what's my point? I guess if I were going to brag about a dog with some health clearances...it wouldn't be my Cardigans...it would be my Briard!

There is no false advertising, no saying I have 4 generations of tested animals.....when in fact the proof is in the pedigree! Would you buy a puppy if you were concerned about testing from a dog whose pedigree looks like the one above here or from someone saying they have 1 dog in each generation with hips tested? Given that they were equal in structure and temperament? I think I know your answer :) Because if you were already looking for a healthy dog (and they were in the breed you were looking for) you would naturally choose the line which is more tested so less 'surprises' are likely to happen, than in a pedigree where nothing or nearly nothing is tested for.

So whose 4 generations of testing do you think should be bragging?

9 comments:

Traci said...

Wow, what a beautiful pedigree Mitcham has...
Great post. I wish I could brag that I have 4 generations behind my dogs, but I honestly have never delved into it... now you've got me curious.
The problem I find, is that you know there are dogs who have been PennHipped. I *wish* they had a searchable database!!! :(

Dawn said...

Well, I tested Grace for the things I felt were important but admit I didn't do all tests out there. The DM test was not out before she was bred, so that wasnt done, but as one of the 12 CHIC dogs out there, I also have DNA PRA documentation. That being said, I do agree with you that testing is a good idea. I was able to put together a pedigree to document the status of hips and PRA for most
of the dogs in the pups pedigree 3 generations back.
I wanted to do the best I could for the puppies I produced, and although I know there is no way to rule out everything in life, I feel confident I did the best I could do. If Grace were bred again, DM testing would be done, heck it will be done just because I want to know. I do know the pups father has since tested clear, so at worst my pups would be carriers.

Cindy said...

Great post Garrett. I also think it's important to remphasize that just if you hinge your reputation on one tested dog within a litter/generation, it leaves a lot of unanswered questions. You might just have the luck of the draw and gotten the good dogs, but the rest of the litter/siblings might have poor health.
I learned my lesson in that area with the collies. One tested and healthy dog does not make for a healthy pedigree/litter. So much hidden genetic junk that we don't know about unless we ask and ask and ask, will bit you in the butt later on. Though it does make it hard when breeders are not as open about things as you are.
It's also an important note to make that it's a great breeder who not only keeps in touch with the puppy owners, but also makes a point of letting them know of the current health of all the dogs related to their own. That goes right along with full generational testing. Can't use the information if you can't get it, don't have it. or it's not relayed to you.
Keep up the good work and thank you for not being afraid to be open, honest and admit where you might be lacking in an area. When you eventually do breed a litter, you will be farther ahead then others in it much longer.

Dawn said...

Can I also add, though, I know who you are referring to and I have to say, she is the one of the people who taught me how important testing is and although I haven't seen it documented, I know she has been testing her dogs. I dont think vilifying anyone who is testing is right. Everyone needs to determine which tests are important to them as I dont know anyone who can afford to test for everything!
Garrett both of our first cardis (siblings) came from hip tested/pra clear parents. Could more tests have been done, maybe, I really can't make that determination,as testing has come more to the forefront in conversations since then.
I do also agree with Cindy though that more than just the individual dogs in a pedigree should be considered-siblings need to be looked at as well if you really want to rule out genetic tendancies. If 4 pups in a litter are having issues with a condition, its possible that passing/sypmtom free 5th dog may produce the illness/condition down the road.
Everyone starts somewhere, so lets applaud the good stuff. So yes, I guess I think that person has a right to be happy with the testing that has been done, as there are as you stated dogs that cant be documented as well. Does that make sense?

Cindy said...

Makes lots of sense to me Dawn--you have to start somewhere with testing, even if that is with one dog.
BUT, as you also stated, one dog out of say a litter of 2 or 10,that is "good" or "clear" or "normal" doesn't mean it doesn't carry genetic junk. All many of those tests are saying is that particular dog is healthy at this time. Unless it is like PRA-a simple recessive, then many of those other tests can have good results, not based on genetics but on the nuture end of it or even, heck, just a lucky roll of the dice. By having the information on as many relatives as posssible, you can make a much more informed decision, specifically on those health issues that do not have a simple yes/no answer. I do feel that it is misleading to brag about generational testing pedigrees if you can only draw one straight line through the tested individuals and you can't do as Garrett showed with the briards and hit every relative-regardless if it's in the breeding pool or swimming as a pet in someone's backyard pool.

Might I also add that it's also a wise, good and trusted breeder that makes a point of keeping in contact with anyone who has their bloodlines and letting them know of ANY health issues(good or bad) that have occured with dogs in their pedigrees. Many don't or won't, too many things to hide? or personal agendas. Not only important to breeders but also to those people who love our pet puppies.

Sarah said...

Well, I agree with doing testing, and I applaud Mitcham's pedigree. But, I can say that there are probably MANY cardigans that will never achieve CHIC certification. The PRA test is required for the CHIC. How many dogs are "line cleared" etc. and owners are not going to send in to OFA.

Because Jacque has been villified by some in the breed for even considering using a PRA carrier in her program, and Syd's sire is a carrier, I went to a HUGE amount of trouble to get her PRA results posted to OFA so that the world at large could know the results of this evil PRA carrier breeding with a simple OFA search. Not only did it cost me $15 just to have it listed, I had to write a special letter, call and email OFA to figure out how to get it done. Why? Well, because Jacque was conscientious and we swabbed EVERY puppy in the litter at the age of 3 weeks. Not just the show hopefuls, but every puppy so that we would know who was a carrier and who was clear. Our pups didn't even have a litter registration number at that time, so my certificates say "Red Girl 3" and "Brindle Girl 2-Dark Sock" for their identification... nothing that identifies these two girls as the dogs I registered as Syd and Bree.

As an aside, some who have the opinion that PRA carriers should never ever be used are also the loudest proponents for using the PRA clear SON of a carrier. Well, isn't that a bit hypocritical, seeing that the son would never have been born without the PRA carrier breeding? But I digress...

There was no reason I had to send Syd's PRA status in to OFA, I have the results, the certificates, and I know my two girls are clear (and would know if they were carriers). I did it for my own reasons.

So if owners have line-cleared dogs, or already had the PRA test done before OFA was listing them, it is another $15 just to have it listed in yet another database.

I think that the low number of CHIC ratings in CWC is very much attributed to the PRA dna test requirement. I think that is an important requirement, but if you take that out of the equation, and calculate the number of CWC that have the CERF and hip testing done, the number would be much higher. Most owners who know their dogs are line cleared, or cleared by parentage, or already did the test and are listed in the CWCCA database, they'd rather keep that $$ to put towards other testing or expenses. I don't blame them.

Also, I think people like to brag about dogs being CHIC rated. Yay, he's a CHIC, or she's a CHIC. I didn't even know that Syd had been CHIC rated until it was brought to my attention. But really, being CHIC rated doesn't mean that the dog has PASSED any or all the tests. Just that they had the tests done. I didn't do the testing to earn a CHIC rating, I just wanted to do the testing available to me (and the low cost clinics allow me to do more testing), and have the results available.

Sarah said...

The other thing I want to suggest taking into account is age. Would I like to have more health testing background for Syd and Bree's pedigree? Of course I would. But when I look at the pedigree, her father is 10 years old, his mother is 17 and his father would be 19 or 20 right now. Syd's maternal grandmother is Gizmo's littermate, so she's now 13 years old, and she goes back to Maggie and Labasheeda as well.

This litter comes from really old dogs, many in their prime and used for breeding before any health testing was 'the norm.' I really like the fact that I can look at mom, dad, grandmothers from both sides, and know how well all these dogs have held up over the years, something that doesn't show up on the OFA site. I hope that going forward, the line will be further proven to hold up well, with health clearances to back it up. There isn't any health database that will show that at 17+, Maggie still has all her pearly whites, and they are healthy and clean without dentals, she has healthy skin, she's mentally sharp (even if she can't hear you or see you, it's amazing that she knows where you are!). Maggie's son Gizmo at 13 has all his teeth, they are very healthy and clean, he's never had any ear trouble or eye trouble, he's just starting to lose his hearing, his eyes are clear and bright, and even with pins in his pelvis from a run-in with a car at the age of 5, he runs around the yard like a nut, preferring to play with the youngest of the bunch. Our chiropractic vet says that Giz and Maggie have the best natural flexibility of all of our dogs. Poor Kane, he's as inflexible as possible.

For me, that's also as important as an OFA result. :-) I really appreciate now the age of the pedigree for my girls. Looking at the dogs, for me OFA data is important, but it's only part of the picture.

But if any of my dogs are as healthy and happy as Uncle Gizzer, Daddy Jake, Grandma Maggie and Grandma Tribby as the years go by, I'll be thrilled!

Garrett808 said...

If its ok for them to brag then I"ll brag here too saying that Zoe is the 4th generation of tested dogs in her pedigree! (one each in each generation including Zoe) and Sadie has FIVE generations of tested dogs! (one again in each generation)

Seems kind of silly now doesn't it?

But yes, everyone does have to start somewhere. Just don't try and sell the buggy before you have a horse.

penni said...

Poor little Chase. He got tested because I was looking for a good reason to neuter him. I don't think he understands that. The results kept coming back so well that I finally decided to keep him intact -- at least until he eats another cell phone. With the DNA tests -- like PRA and DM, having a clear dog, even if other members of the family are not clear, is a gift. It means that the things we really like about a dog are available without having to worry about those two problems. Other of our health issues are not so cut and dried.

Each of us must decide what is important to the breed and to ourselves, as well as what we can reasonably afford to do. I come from a breed that has so many problems, that I am perhaps a little overboard.

Like Sarah's Syd, Chase's parents are getting up there at 9 and 13, but they are still hale and hearty, healthy enough to make a great showing in Topeka, and to rule their respective roosts. If I don't kill Chase with my bare hands, I hope to have him ruling my roost when we are both old and grey.