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  #11  
Old 04-20-2011, 09:53 AM
BullyVixen BullyVixen is offline
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There is one breeder in particular who breeds and shows chihuahuas who does not health test, and her dogs are pretty darn healthy. They live long happy lives. Chihuhuas have knee problems and she hasnt had any dogs who have had bad knee problems. She has some gorgeous dogs. Many of the dogs shes produced are now champions, and healthy ones at that. Maybe it could be the stock shes using?? She only buys foundation stock from two other breeders, that I know of. Her mentor has been in the breed for many years.
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  #12  
Old 04-20-2011, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by BullyVixen View Post
There is one breeder in particular who breeds and shows chihuahuas who does not health test, and her dogs are pretty darn healthy. They live long happy lives. Chihuhuas have knee problems and she hasnt had any dogs who have had bad knee problems. She has some gorgeous dogs. Many of the dogs shes produced are now champions, and healthy ones at that. Maybe it could be the stock shes using?? She only buys foundation stock from two other breeders, that I know of. Her mentor has been in the breed for many years.
Define healthy. A lot of pet people wouldn't have a clue their pet was unhealthy unless they were in serious distress. Small dogs may have minorly noticable patella issues. Doesn't mean they aren't there. It means they aren't being noticed. Doesn't make it better or right.

Gorgeous or not, I wouldn't pay out for a dog with a poorer chance of good health because the breeder can't be bothered to health test or does not care. That makes their ethics and morals suspect. A good breeder breeds to improve their breed. Make pretty dogs that have unknown health is not an improvement.

Chi club of america suggests cardiac, patella and eye testing. There are a lot of nasty eye issues rampant out there. Not testing.. All of those issues can hide. Irresponsible breeding.
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  #13  
Old 04-20-2011, 11:28 AM
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Bad bad bad bad bad.

Health testing is crucially important, especially in pet dogs who aren't bred for any purpose besides being lifelong companions to humans.
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Old 04-20-2011, 02:38 PM
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I personally am a beleiver in health testing. I think it is a tool that should be utilized.

However, do be aware that most of the screening tests are not 100% black and white. The skill of the veterinarian comes into play, whether a general vet, opthomologist, cardiologist etc. Also, some heritable diseases can develop with age. Unless the test is DNA based there is always a margin of error.

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  #15  
Old 04-20-2011, 03:05 PM
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The thing I often wonder about a lot of these toy breeders is why not do the health testing? It's crazy cheap compared to running Xrays on a lab's hips and elbows. It's a general exam with your normal vet on the minimum and $30 to submit cardiac and patellas to offa or 15.00 each if you submit 5 at a time. In some places a single dog show entry costs more, and it's not like they expire.

Cerf exams are a more legit pita. They're annual, you have to find a clinic, and then hope it doesn't fill. Even with that though it's not that hard to find one. At least here we have a clinic twice a year that you can plan on, and you'll get an appointment time.
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  #16  
Old 04-20-2011, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Dekka View Post
Overall I am not ok with working bred dogs either. That thinking has kept eye issues in JRTs.
depends on the testing, x-rays for hd is a waste of money in sighthounds & scenthounds from working stock as it weeds itself out. but the eye issue is a different matter for dogs that aren't expected to use them beyond the length of a den tunnel, it obviously needs to be tested for because injury could cover up what is genetic. really it depends on the health issue & how it affects the job.
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  #17  
Old 04-20-2011, 05:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailcreek View Post
I personally am a beleiver in health testing. I think it is a tool that should be utilized.

However, do be aware that most of the screening tests are not 100% black and white. The skill of the veterinarian comes into play, whether a general vet, opthomologist, cardiologist etc. Also, some heritable diseases can develop with age. Unless the test is DNA based there is always a margin of error.
I agree with this. I do think non-breeders (and even some breeders) have a bit of a misconception about health tests. It seems like people believe that there are dogs who are genetically normal and dogs who are "flawed" when the truth is, all dogs carry the potential to produce some less than desirable traits both physically and mentally. Most tests currently available only tell you what the dog is (some even what the dog is at this moment), not what the dog will produce.

I still health test breeding dogs, still encourage newbies to health test because IMO the more knowledge you have the better. But health testing doesn't guarantee dogs will produce healthy dogs and not health testing doesn't guarantee they won't. Dog breeding is always a gamble. Plenty of dogs pass OFA and still produce HD or ED. And sometimes the more concerning issues in a breed don't have any health tests such as epilepsy, early cancer and bloat. To really progress further than we already have with improving the health of our breeds, DNA testing is needed. But there is a danger in that as well, as you can't just toss out every affected and carrier of any problem. That has happened with DNA testing in several breeds and in those breeds that results have been pretty devastating.

Nothing is ever black and white. In some breeds, working breeders rarely health test (and as was mentioned in another thread, their puppies are usually less expensive than show bred puppies) but I wouldn't consider them "bad breeders" or that they are breeding bad dogs. And there are breeds were certain health issues are so widespread that health testing for those issues seems to be pointless. For example, according to OFA 72% of Bulldogs and 64% of Pugs are dysplastic and 0% are Excellent. As such it is safe to assume that most dogs of these breeds have less than ideal hips. About the only solution for that would be to outcross to another breed and likely, to then select for different structure. Some corgi breeders who are well respected will breed dogs who don't pass OFA because in their opinion, the dwarf characteristics can cause hips to look abnormal. On the flip side, IGs have 60% of dogs submitted receiving an excellent rating and 0% being dysplastic (Whippets and German Pinchers are close to that as well). If I was looking for a puppy of those breeds, not OFAing wouldn't concern me much.
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  #18  
Old 04-20-2011, 05:54 PM
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I feel strongly enough about health tests to test my pet dogs who were never bred. I don't think there's any reasonable excuse not to health test.

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  #19  
Old 04-20-2011, 06:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pops2 View Post
depends on the testing, x-rays for hd is a waste of money in sighthounds & scenthounds from working stock as it weeds itself out. but the eye issue is a different matter for dogs that aren't expected to use them beyond the length of a den tunnel, it obviously needs to be tested for because injury could cover up what is genetic. really it depends on the health issue & how it affects the job.
Do things weed themselves out?

I know of one working dog who could catch kibble out of the air, but had cataracts. (he was fixed). It didn't affect him.

Sighthounds maybe not, they tend to be a bit 'weenie' and let you know when things hurt. But many working dogs will continue to work even with a fair amount of pain. Not saying those dogs shouldn't work, but should they be bred?

I agree with Aleron. Tests are not black and white. And even if a test comes back questionable. Ie fair hips. I there might be decent reasons to do a test breeding.
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  #20  
Old 04-20-2011, 07:01 PM
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I think it is crucial***8230;. Esp. for specific things like eyes***8230; Di went blind fast and hard at age 6, although she and her parents were both CERF clear***8230; However I know the terrier Dekka is talking about and he also had cataracts but you would NEVER know it***8230; He worked fine and as Dekka said caught treats just fine, without testing you would have never known he had cataracts***8230;

On the same note though, in my hometown for years and years hunters have bred assorted hounds for working ability, and I pretty well guarantee they were never tested.. They lived happy long lives working for years and retiring by their masters feet***8230;

I can't hold it against them, they would laugh if I told them to test, but how do you explain to them, that their often 18 year old hounds may be in danger without it?
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