Health Screening

  1. DNA Parental Screening tests - thankfully, there are DNA tests available for the most serious problems such as Degenerative Myopathy (which causes loss of mobility). Therefore, we rely heavily on parental pre - screening to prevent combining parents who both hold the recessive gene. Canine screening is incredible nowadays with scientists discovering the genetic markers for diseases thus identifying “Carriers” . This ensures that our pups/dogs bred CANNOT BE AFFECTED by selecting the right combination of parents so the recessive/affected genes are never mated together. Our DNA Screening List is detailed in the health document we sent to you when you contact us. The list is also detailed on most dogs' page under SCEENING TAB.
  2. Low inbreeding - to reduce risk for the hereditary problems for which there is no DNA test available we ensure parents are not closely related. This reduces the risk of both parents having the same recessive or affected disease genes as obviously these problems run in bloodlines. We work within inbreeding ratio of 8% which is calculated by computer software (to reduce human error in calculation!).
  3. General Health/Vet Check - both your dog and the parents should be in good health, up to date on vaccines/flea/ worm treatment and not affected by any serious hereditary heart problem. parents are vet checked before breeding and pups are vet checked a minimum of 3 times prior to adoption. This reduces risks of hereditary and congenital defects in particular structural issues (kneecaps) and also incidences of heart defects. We use a highly respected vet however these checks are no substitute for the above checks and are not the absolute screening of DNA testing,
  4. BVA Hip Scheme - this grades the parents’ hip joints out of a score of 106 (so a possible 53 faults on each hip). The original form is green in colour and will state a score for each hip e.g. 6/4. This would be a BVA Hip Score of 10. The lower the score the better so 0/0 would be perfect hip formation. Associations suggest up to BVA 18 is acceptable.
  5. The BVA Elbow Scheme -  is out of 6 (so 3 possible faults per elbow). The original grading sheet is orange and will state a mark on the bottom with 0/0 being perfect elbows whilst 0/1 or 1/0 is considered acceptable. Grades of anything higher than 1 would be worrisome and anything 2 or more out of 6, a cause for concern.
  6. OFA Scheme for Hips and Elbows -  simpler to understand as it uses a description rather than a comparison score. Joint confirmation is graded as either Excellent, Good, Fair, Borderline, Mild Dysplasia, Moderate Dysplasia or Severe Dysplasia. Of the 7 evaluations the first 3 are considered breed-able generally. The Elbows are either negative or alternatively if not clear then Graded 1-3. Helpfully the Report also states any problems such as Degenerative Joint Disease, Osteochondrosis etc.
  7. Patellas (kneecaps) are an issue for dogs which is often overlooked, however very painful if they are slipping (referred to as luxation). There is no BVA scheme for patellas however there is an American OFA test which can be performed in the UK. Luxation, if present, is graded 1- 4 with 4 being permanently slipped out kneecaps.