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Old 03-19-2008, 10:45 PM
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Default Genetic Testing, PRA

Okay,looking at breeders. I know I'm after health testing but I don't understand it all.

OFA and CERF what do they stand for?

Also, the breed I'm loking at, the only genetic disease its prone to is PRA or Progressive Retinal Atrophy. So this is all I'd be looking at wanting my chosen breeder to test for?

I found this site
http://www.optigen.com/opt9_test_prcd_pra.html

i'm pretty confused. Also pretty scared about looking for a breeder for this particular breed. I think finding a breeder that health tests at all is going to be a struggle. Unless I go for show lines, which I don't want to. Any tips on finding a breeder I'm after or seeing as this breed is extremley healthy as a whole, should health testing be as high on my list of priorities as I have it now?
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Old 03-19-2008, 10:57 PM
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Orthopedic Animal Foundation
Canine Eye Registration Foundation

If a dog has more than just a CERF done it's on the OFA site.

What breed are you looking at?
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Old 03-19-2008, 11:48 PM
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OFA is when the dogs gets their hips/elbow x-rayed and sent in to the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals, a board of three orthopedic vets views the x-rays and then grades the hips elbows on their findings.

CERF is Canine Eye Registration Foundation. Basically the dog is given some drops in each eye that dialates the pupils. When the pupils are dialated the vet (opthamologist, not regular vet) will look into the eyes using a few different instruments. They are looking for cataracts, signs of PRA, signs of CEA, injuries etc. A clear CERF report means the dog didn't have anything visible wrong with their eyes.

The Optigen test is a DNA blood test. Basically they have found the DNA marker for PRA in certain breeds and they can tell for certain which dogs will have it/produce it and which dogs won't. A dog usually will not develop PRA until 7+ yrs old. If the genetic test is not done and you go only by CERF results you can very well pass on PRA to any puppy produced by the dog. All responsible breeders utilize the optigen test. All breeders should CERF as well because optigen only tests for PRA.

I do all three tests, plus BAER tests. I would not buy from a breeder who did anything less.
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Old 03-19-2008, 11:58 PM
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okay. I'm lokoing at kelpies. I've been too scared too look because I know there isn't a big chance I will find a working breeder that does all the health testing I want done, and I really don't want to import.
If I do ever breed working dogs it would be kelpies (thats a LONG way off for someone that is yet to even see their first trial) and I would definetly do all testing.

How else can I track down breeders? I don't want to look like a townie by asking about health testing and stuff but I really don't want to go with a breeder that doesn't do it.
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Old 03-20-2008, 12:58 AM
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I did just find one that atleast screens for HD, thats makes me feel better. I'll keep looking, I just need to know exactly what I'm looking for
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Old 03-20-2008, 11:53 AM
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In a breed like Kelpies, I can guarantee that most of the show dogs haven't lost their instinct. ACD's have been bred (in america) as show dogs for years and when I went to the national specialty I didn't see very many that failed their herding instinct test. This doesn't mean that they would be great herders, but I haven't seen the lack of drive in this breed that you hear about in others. Don't discard the show breeders because you think they produce a lack of drive/ability. At least go meet the dogs and ask if they have ever done any herding etc. An ACD breeder in my area doesn't put herding titles on her dogs because she doesn't need to prove anything, they work on her farm daily and she won't breed a dog that won't work. She shows in AKC and does all proper health testing though.

Good Luck! Just don't sell yourself (or your future breeding program) short because you give up on finding someone who does health testing.
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