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Old 01-23-2013, 03:59 PM
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Default Penn Hip vs OFA

One of Hudson's litter mates had her hips done for PennHip and got the results back earlier this week. I didn't know PennHip would do scores starting at 4 months, I thought they were similar to OFA and did them at 2 years.

At some point I would like to get Hudson's done, just for my own knowledge because i want to know All. The. THINGS!! Does anyone have a preference or do you all find them similar.

For anyone that knows a lot about PennHip, what do the scores mean? Please, use little words and simple sentences, I'm dumb. I've tried to figure it out, but it just escapes me. Are lower #s better?
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:21 PM
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OFA will do x-rays younger, but they are preliminary. Not official until after 2 years old. I believe PennHIP is the same way but I'm not sure. Auggie was over 2 when I asked about it so I could be mistaken.

IIRC - and it has been many years since Auggie had his hips done - PennHIP measures in a different way than OFA does. They differ on the theory of what indicates dysplaysia. OFA looks at, well, what the joint looks like on an x-ray. PennHIP measures for laxity of the joint, where 0 is a tight joint and 1 is that the hip can actually be completely forced out of the socket. So they are manipulating the dog rather than just looking at what the joint looks like in a natural (when sedated) state. They also measure for degenerative joint disease and there is some equation where that factors in too. Smaller numbers are better, I believe .7 is the tipping point into dysplastic and .3 and below is best?
Also PennHIP compares the joints to other dogs in the breed, so it's relative with another dog rather than just a straight measure. What is a .3 in one breed could be entirely different than a .3 in another breed.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:53 PM
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Personally, I think it's more important that whoever is taking the x-rays is experienced at taking the views/positions each organization requires and that whoever is reading them is experienced at reading those views than which one is used. There are people who swear up and down by one or the other, but I don't think either one is necessarily "better."

Especially if you want to know "just" for your own knowledge, I would just pick one. OFA is more subjective IMO but for knowing what you can expect for a pet dog in his lifetime, I honestly don't think it matters. Heck, for a pet dog you probably don't need to officially do either one, your vet or a consulting radiologist or surgeon should be able to read the films out for you.
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Old 01-23-2013, 05:24 PM
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OFA is cheaper. But yes, PennHip will rate hips at I think any age. Certainly by 4 months. Whether the rating is entirely accurate at that age is open to debate.
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:30 PM
ZillyAPBT ZillyAPBT is offline
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Ok let me see if I can break this down.....

OFA for an official score must be done after the dog turns 2. The x ray is sent to 3 different orthopedic vets for their oppinion as to how the hip socket, femur ball formation and their fit together look. They are looking for remodeling on the femur head, wear on the edges of the hip socket, and how much Femur head is actually covered in the socket. They are rated excellent, good, fair, and then mildly dysp, and grade 1-3 after that. The 3 scores from the 3 vets are averaged and that is your final score. It is all based on visual inspection of your xrays.
The person doing the xray can GREATLY affect the turnout of your scores, you must must have proper positioning or it can skew your score.


Pennhip measures the laxicity *how loose or tight the tendons holding the hips together*. It must be done by a trained pennhip vet, not any vet can do it. They take a base xray *exactly like ofa* and then they apply a machine that puts pressure on the femurs while holding the pelvis in place, the amount of pressure is determined by the weight and breed of the dog I believe, Then another x ray is taken. Those two xrays are scanned into a computer and run through the pennhip program and it gives you an EXACT measurement of how far the femur head moved when pressure was applied. Thus telling you how tightly your dogs tendons are. They also look for DJD, Degenerative Joint Disease which would cause the bone to degrade over time, causing the dog to become dysplastic even if the tendons were tight. This can be done as young as 4 months, tho I personally believe that a dog should be fully mature before doing any testing.

now with that being said.... let me explain how this pertains to your dog in the real world. lmao.

OFA takes a picture of the dogs joint. It tells you what that dogs joints look like ON THAT DAY. IF the dog is a young dog that is at a healthy weight and has done no work those hips could look pristeen, but allow some age and heavy work on that joint and re xray you could have a completely different picture.

Pennhip, tells you the functionality of the hip joint itself. How well put together is that joint, which in turns tells you WILL IT HOLD UP to work. Period!

IF you have a dog that has BEAUTIFUL hips on the OFA xrays, you grade out as an excellent, AND that dogs Tendons are LOOSE *greater than .60 according to PEnnhip* Then as your dog is working and aging, that Femur head is bouncing around in that socket like a ping pong ball, the tendons aren't holding it in place, and there will be MAJOR grinding and remodling of the hips socket and Femur head. Given enough time *age* or a hard working lifestyle, this dog WILL become dysplastic in it's old age.

Now take the opposit Scenario, you take a dog that grades out as a Fair on the OFA scale. mabey it has poor socket coverage for the Femur head, mabey the dog has small femur heads, or shallow socket lips... any number of things. But this dog pennhips out at .25/.25. Functionality of those hips is near perfect, which means that while the hip isn'y shaped perfectly, they are held together so well that you will have very little wear and tear on them with age and work. Thus your dog has Fair hips, and will always have Fair hips, but never never dysplastic hips.

I personally test for BOTH. I believe that each individual test only looks at half the puzzle. You must know what those hips look like, but you must also know how well they function! One without the other is completely useless in my book. And since Pennhip must take an OFA style xray as thier base xray, I simply ask my vet to double load the film, and send the xray film off to OFA, thus no need for two vet visits, and two prices, I've NEVER in 15 years had a vet have a problem with this, and there is usually only a minimal charge for the extra film.
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Old 01-23-2013, 10:05 PM
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It's my understanding that before age two pennhip evils are preliminary only.
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Old 01-23-2013, 10:27 PM
ZillyAPBT ZillyAPBT is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pops2 View Post
It's my understanding that before age two pennhip evils are preliminary only.
Pennhip doesn't do prelims. Anything after 4 months is considered an official score.

OFA does prelims on hips and elbows up to 2 years, anything over 2 is an offical score.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sassafras View Post
Especially if you want to know "just" for your own knowledge, I would just pick one. OFA is more subjective IMO but for knowing what you can expect for a pet dog in his lifetime, I honestly don't think it matters. Heck, for a pet dog you probably don't need to officially do either one, your vet or a consulting radiologist or surgeon should be able to read the films out for you.
that's a very good point, not one that I thought of.


Zilly - Thanks for your detailed explanation, that helps a lot!
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Old 01-24-2013, 08:56 AM
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Zilly, great post, any experience with FCI ratings? How they compare with OFA? What I'm reading isn't feeling as clear as what you wrote.
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