At Horizon Poodles health testing takes a very central role. We genetically test all breeding stock for Hips(OFA), Eyes(prcd/rcd4 and CAER), Patellas, LCP, dwarfism(OCD), DM, and Heart. We do thyroid where clinics are provided. All testing is viewable at www.offa.org . A LOT of testing goes into our dogs before they are ever bred and, although nothing is a 100%, we do our best to reduce the risk of genetically inherited diseases. If a test is not present for a specific dog, please feel free to ask us for the results.
Hips are radiographed at 1 year (preliminary) and 2 years(official) to check for hip dysplasia and sent to the Orthopedic Foundation of Animals (OFA) for evaluation. This radiograph also provides the radiologist the view needed to rule out a crippling hereditary degenerative joint disease called Leggs-Calf Perthes (LCP).
All poodles are prcd tested by DNA test, or are ‘A’ by parentage. Prcd(progressive rod-cone degeneration) is only ONE form of PRA( progressive retinal atrophy) that can afflict poodles. Again, this is only one form of PRA, so all poodles are also CAER’d yearly by a veterinary ophthalmologist for other various eye diseases including micropapilla, optic nerve hypoplasia, and other forms of PRA. Although tested yearly, we submit results every other year to OFA. Yearly forms are available by request.
Patellas are examined by a veterinarian as puppies and then certified with OFA as adults. It is not unusual for a young puppy to have slightly loose (but not luxating) patellas until they build muscle mass, but by 1 year the ligaments should be tight. Knees are certified after 1 year of age.
As health clinics allow, all breeding stock is evaluated for heart issues and certified with OFA. There are several things that can affect the heart and it is very important to keep teeth clean and regular dentals performed. Oral bacteria (tartar) can cause damage to all organs in the body, especially the heart.
Breeding dogs are DNA tested for the dwarfism gene or clear by parentage. This is a crippling genetic disorder that affects bone growth, not oinly in the legs, but also spine, and jaw. Dwarfism dogs can suffer from severe bone deformity, causing severe arthritis at a young age. It cam also have organ function issues as well.
For predominantly our international inquiries, you will be happy to know that we certify our dogs for their full dentition and register the results with OFA.
Where health clinics allow, we do thyroid testing. Although hypothyroidism is easily treated, we do our best to eliminate this health issue form our lines.
Degenerative Myelopathy is a progressive disease of the spinal cord. While most elderly dogs will suffer from some form of this disease naturally, there is a DNA test for a specific gene mutation that can cause a specific form of DM.
This is the newest DNA test available for a second type of PRA in poodles. This is a very late onset disease, where average age of ONSET is 12 years of age. Since it takes several years for the disease to progress, it is unlikely owners would be able to distinguish between old age eye issues and rcd4. Because this test has become part of the poodle panel at paw prints, it is now regularly run on all of our dogs.