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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
we are allowed now to breed with any form of cataract, just not the form post polar.
dr engelhard (Denmark) says this is the only form which is hereditary

great news for the labradors!!!!!!!!!!!????????

lg evelyn
 

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Hi evelyn,

On paper that doesn't sound like much of a step forward but then there is chat frequently about actually how much harm being affected with HC actually causes a dog.... Mind you, having seen quite a few it causes very limited sight within a few years I'd not want to deliberately breed knowing I could or even WOULD be passing it along.

Had a dog of 6 come under me when I judged last weekend. Lovely open standard labrador bitch. She went out quite quickly towards the shot but as it was quite a long way, when she struggled to find she turned to ask for help. Handler said to me 'bless her, she can't see further than about twenty yards clearly so no point in saying anything but 'looost'. Which he did and she did eventually work her way back and find.

She only failed her eye certificate about 14 months before but was down to 20 yards in that time. He said he expected her sight to go to next to nothing within about two years, so by about 8.

Thats not the story of all dogs with HC I appreciate that but for me, its enough to try and not have that happen to anything I might breed to want a clear and current certifiate including HC.... but thats just me.

However evelyn, of course here we don't NEED to have undertaken ANY healthtests to breed, or if we have, there are no 'breedable' and 'not breedable' results required by our Uk KC, so we are in the same boat as you really now. I imagine *most* good breeders will still not breed if a dog fails, just because they *could*.... ?

Di
 

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we are allowed now to breed with any form of cataract, just not the form post polar.
dr engelhard (Denmark) says this is the only form which is hereditary
I completely agree. But contra to many people I think HC is very important.

Everyone thinks GPRA is important because those dogs will go blind. But look at the facts.

In the last full year before Optigen became popular just 4 GPRA affected dogs were found. During the same period just over 170 dogs were found suffering from HC. Contrary to popular opinion, something like 5% of these dogs WILL go totally blind! That is between 8 and 9 dogs blind from cataracts, twice the number of GPRA affecteds! OK, so these dogs can be operated on. But to me, that makes no difference. We should not be breeding dogs who can only function after a difficult and expensive operation. (It is a lot harder than human cataract removal.)

I have to say that I dont think we will make any inroads into HC until there is a DNA test, but I also have to say that I am frightened of what a DNA test might, (I believe "will") turn up when it arrives.

Regards, John
 

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Just to say was typing at the same time as you John but couldn't agree more with you on all issues you raise, including that a DNA test will lead us down a very frightening path, even though, possibly, its a necessary one.

Di
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
my gianni had hc (don´t know what form) and also my wischnu actually is affected of hc (also don´t know what form)...
he is still going strong... marking better than ever before....

but no doubt hc is no fun sometimes, but if you have 4 forms of cataract which can´t be passed through.
why not breed with this dogs
 

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Ok, I misunderstood you, you agree with the lifting of the ban on breeding with HC affected dogs in your country???

Di
 

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Can i ask a probably dumb question, my Twix has cataracts but I assumed it was just because of her age :? Is HC referring to younger dogs I presume???

Sorry for being a dumb butt again :oops: :lol:
 

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Linda, not a stupid question, I struggle to pin it all down 100% ;-)

Cataracts come in several different forms. Some patently inheritable, some seemingly not, or harder to track down. I imagine Twix has not had the actual type of cataract 'nailed down' by a specialist?

HC can strike at any time, its just the form that is known to be inheritable. Exactly how we aren't seeminlgy 101% sure but probably know... But there are several other forms of cataract, and yes, I'm sure there is a technical name for it but 'old age' cataracts tends not to fall into these catagories when talking about fails of eye certificates.

My dylan had old age cataracts when he passed ten. But he still passed another couple of BVA eye certificates, so I know they aren't part of the eye test. The specialist actually said 'clear eye certificate but as regards this old boy - should have gone to Specsavers' ;-)

Di
 

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Thanks Diana, phew dont feel so stupid now :D Twix can hardly see a few inches in front of her bless her, but she is happy :)

Fascinating subject by the way, just how many more health tests will there be for you poor breeders :?
 

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John, how far away do you think we may be from such a DNA test? Not only do I agree 110% with you and Di re the amount of dogs that detected to have HC every year but until the Optigen test arrived for PRA, I'd only really worried about HC as I'd heard about dogs going blind from HC but never really from anything els :?

Natasha
 

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Can i ask a probably dumb question, my Twix has cataracts but I assumed it was just because of her age Is HC referring to younger dogs I presume???

Sorry for being a dumb butt again
It's not a dumb question Linda, and please dont apologise.

There are many kinds of cataract, but most are not hereditary. You can have a cararact form due to a scratch on the eye. Often this in working dogs retrieving from "Scratchy" cover such as Blackthorn. It canalso be so easily caused by a cat's claw! Then there is the sugar cataract caused by Diabetes. Anything like that is very obviously not hereditary so is no problem from the direction of breeding.

Some drugs can cause cataracts as a side effect, so again, no direct problem about breeding. (But it could be that the reason why the drug was prescribed might be a reason for not breeding.)

Then there is, as an example, a form of cataract formed as a by product of GPRA. No it is not hereditary in it's own right, but it is formed as an effect of a hereditary disease, so obviously you should not be breeding from this dog.

Then there is what we call "Hereditary Cataracts." Of these there are several different types. But it is important to remember that in the main they are "Breed specific." As a couple of examples, "Congenital with Microphthalmos and Rotatory Nystagmus" affects Miniature Schnauzer's, Boston Terriers get the Subcapsular Anterior kind. (I'm copying that straight from the book, my expertees is in Labs, not Schnauzers! :wink: )

The kind normally found in Labradors is the Posterior Polar Subcapsular Cataract, of which there are both early onset and late onset. Early onset is normally present by 18 months or so where the late onset is not usually seen until 5 to 8 years old, and many not even show until very old age. There is no top age limit. Occasionally an odd type "May" develop, but they are few and far between, and would make me wonder what might have happened some years back. (A miss mating crept in there somewhere???)

So, without seeing your Twix, it would be impossible to say what the cause is. But be aware, occasionally in old age a dog's eye can appear cloudy simply as part of age related degeneration. My Lucy's eyes went like that with very little loss of vision. :) Any questions, just ask.

Regards, John
 

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Thank you John :D

The vet did say Twix has cataracts and she has a milky glaze look over her eye and it is more obvioius in dim light bizarely :? At her age I would not do anything about it anyway, I would not put her through an OP and she manages perfectly well :D She is happy and on no medication so as long as she is happy so am I :D (she is supplements just not metacam or any drugs).

Thank you for the explanation, fascinating stuff :D
 

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John, how far away do you think we may be from such a DNA test?
Good question Natasha! The short answer is, I don’t have a clue. I've been told it's close for the last 3 years, and I don’t doubt it is. There are I think 5 different breeds now covered with DNA tests for HC. But of course, by sheer weight of numbers Labradors are going to be the big money spinner, the breed everyone wants to cover. But the laboratory’s are very shy when it comes to giving out details of plans. If one Lab announced it was close to releasing a test then others would be releasing early simply to grab the patents, so they all hold their cards very close to their chests.

Thank you for the explanation, fascinating stuff
You’re more than welcome Linda. :)

Regards, John
 

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Contender said:
John, how far away do you think we may be from such a DNA test? Not only do I agree 110% with you and Di re the amount of dogs that detected to have HC every year but until the Optigen test arrived for PRA, I'd only really worried about HC as I'd heard about dogs going blind from HC but never really from anything els :?
I can vaguely recall someone recently posting that the HC DNA test was imminent.

IF it does turn out to be a dominant gene with incomplete penetrance - then I believe it truly has the potential to cripple the gene pool - some breeding lines could be stopped dead in their tracks :(

At present, we have the annual eye test, and I feel desperately sorry for breeders who have a well used quality producer who discovers late on in the dogs 'career' that he fails his eye test for HC - there but for the grace of god - yet - we also know that many of his progeny may never ever have a problem - MINEFIELD 8O how many people who have bred into those lines will have the courage to test their dogs? getting people to PRA test has been an uphill struggle - and the responses of withdrawing anything but clear dogs is un-necessary - I just pray the breed doesn't suffer as a result of these decisions when the HC DNA test is available.

As a slight aside, is anyone aware that Optigen now offer a DNA test for MRD - another recessive gene which I am guessing isn't seen that much in our breed - but once again, can be bred out quickly and easily.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
i did the RD/OSD test with my little one.....
last year

and i think they are still far away from the hc test...
but we will see...
one day!!!!!!!!!!!!

but actually we have to igore that test than....
we can´t breed only clear to clear......

are you aware there are NO much used studs in england without
hc results
 

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Don't start me on MRD Sue! You know I blame the Golden people 100% for the MRD problem. It could have been nailed to the floor years ago were it not for them.

But no, I dont think we have a big problem in the breed from MRD. Certainly not to the extent of Goldens. Trouble is though, with the restriction on reporting forced on us by the GR people we (meaning us lay people) really have no way of knowing the full extent of the problem.

Yep, you've hit a raw nerve there Sue! :evil:

Regards, John
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
sue51 said:
EvelynH said:
are you aware there are NO much used studs in england without hc results
Do you mean many of the well used studs have produced HC affected dogs?
all of them...
a friend looked at the bva list and could not find any without
 

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I don’t think there is many, show or work, with no HC "skeletons" in the background. That’s the reason I've been saying for so long that I'm frightened what the future might hold. Will we have a breed left then the Laboratory’s have finished? I doubt it.

Regards, John
 
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