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Brian M
14th December 2009, 10:21 AM
Hi

Even though I live local to Chestergates I have decided not to have my four scanned ,it is not anything to do with cost it is really just my own outlook on life .I have always tended to view all things in life that I will face up to any problems as and when they may or may not develop ,so with regard to my beloved Cavaliers they are as now all fit and well and all insured and to my knowledge lack for nothing and as I have no intention whatsoever to breed/show I personally cant see any point in them having scans which possibly may reasult in unwellcome news .
So whats the opinion of other members should one scan and then possibly be aware of any problems that may be there and then be better able to care and look out for them ,or do what I prefer to do face things as and when they may happen but of course always keep a watchful eye on them all as thanks to this forum and members we now far more aware of what to watch for .
Comments Please.:)

harleyfarley
14th December 2009, 10:27 AM
No brian, id leave well alone unless youve a concern, just thank goodness you are in that situation and long may it last, happy christmas to you and your family plus all 4 cavs, would you recommend 4. di

Brian M
14th December 2009, 10:33 AM
Hi Di

And Happy Hols to you Di,yes I would reccommend 5 if I could ,I have been working on Dawn to catnap Big Ginge but so far no luck ,and as far as scanning goes I am staying well away unless . :)

sins
14th December 2009, 11:13 AM
It's purely a personal choice Brian.
If you have no reason to suspect any problems then there is no need to scan.
I had a number of reasons for scanning a pet.Daisy is an interesting cavalier,her sire is 11 and her g/sire was born in 1991 and she goes very quickly back to old Irish and UK lines.So my scientific curiosity got the better of me....
Also not many Irish cavaliers have been scanned and her dam's line is no more following the passing of a well known breeder a few years ago.
The positives of scanning a pet before they become symptomatic:
If the syrinx is small,early intervention with diuretics may help stabilise the syrinx and give you more options than managing a symptomatic dog later on as damage may have been done.
You also have a baseline scan to measure against to see if things deteriorate.
You can contribute to the EBV scheme,give DNA even if your pet is clear.
You never know who has a dog that may be of special interest to researchers.
Cons:
Yes you need to be made of tough stuff to handle things emotionally if you voluntarily choose to open pandora's box for yourself.
It will also force decisions upon you that you may not be prepared to make......i.e spay/neuter or medication choices.
The contribution of a pet owner who may own maybe six to ten cavaliers over a decade can be as valuable a contributor to the EBV scheme as a small breeder.So any pet owner who had scanned and had either a good, a bad,or indifferent result can submit the scan for research.
I think in future we'll see more pet owners scanning at the request of their puppies breeder.
I don't regret my decision to have Daisy scanned.Yes I felt weary and unsettled for a few days afterwards but life goes on.The support is in place, especially on this site to cushion the worst of the upset.Daisy is still the same wonderful girl she was before last Thursday and I'm still the same ol' battleaxe too....
Truthfully Brian,noone will or should pressure you to scan your pet.The low cost scanning schemes are still primarily for breeders who need to screen
their breeding stock,and they're very well attended these days.
Sins

Rumor
14th December 2009, 11:13 AM
I feel like you do Brian. I take mine to the Vet regularly & we are both watching all 3. Other than Leopold's little disc problem that we are staying on top of we are leaving well enough alone. :)

Tania
14th December 2009, 11:24 AM
When Molly was diagnosed with sm, even though Dougall did not show any obvious signs apart from some back discomfort. I made the decision to have him scanned. The scan revealed he has cm. Clare Rusbridge has put him on Cimetadine and a mild dose of Previcox. The reason for putting him on the Cimetadine is for preventative measures.
I felt terribly guilty for not getting Molly diagnosed sooner, I was mortified to think she had been suffering for several months and we got everything completely wrong. My main reason for having Dougall scanned is because I had to know so we had a better chance if anything bad developed in the future.
If Molly had not shown any symptons and I did not suspect sm, like you Brian, I would have probably left well alone.

MARK MARSHALL
14th December 2009, 11:52 AM
To everyone who has a CKCS - Yes, Yes, Yes.

The more you and me scan for SM, plus give mouth swabs and blood - the more data the researchers get and the more credit is given to EBV results etc.

Show specimen dogs are very much in the minority and we, the puplic hold all the trump cards.

By submitting as much information to the researchers, we can all help to ensure that the breed has a future and the puppies of tomorrow are healthier and long lived.

MRI scanning - be it via GA or SEDATION is straight forward and NOT dangerous.

Having been involved with over 150 scans - we have not had a problem other than one or two upset stomachs.

Mark Marshall.

renate
14th December 2009, 12:00 PM
in dk it is not usual to scan for SM, and done only in very few clinics.

i have not considered scanning my girls, for SM or with ultrasound for heart problems.
they will never have offspring, thus will never spread whatever they might have.

should they ever have symptomps, or what i could perceive as symptoms of heart problems or SM i would naturally have them scanned.

to have them scanned shows only what is now, anyway. not what might be there in 1 or a few years time.

Tania
14th December 2009, 12:03 PM
to have them scanned shows only what is now, anyway. not what might be there in 1 or a few years time.

Would a scan not show a malformation now which is then a potential for sm as it has with Dougall?

Kate H
14th December 2009, 12:18 PM
I had Oliver scanned at age 6 not because he had any symptoms, but because I suspected his pedigree meant he had a high risk of SM. His champion father had produced one other (symptomatic) puppy with SM from a different bitch (which meant he was amost certainly a carrier), and his grandfather and great-grandfather (Margaret C's Monty) had both had SM. I might not have had it done if the Midland Club hadn't offered low price scans at Chestergates - I'm very wary of anaesthetics except in emergencies, so CG's sedating was a bonus. His breeder had already withdrawn his father from stud (and he was never a very fashionable stud dog, thank goodness), but at age 11 felt he was too old to scan (most breeders seem to assume that scans always mean an anaesthetic, an 'invasive technique'; perhaps if more neurologists used sedation, more breeders would scan? You only have one chance to discover your dog is allergic to anaesthetic! Or just tell people how much anaesthetics have improved in the last few years.).

Oliver was scanned again this year at age 8, and his syrinx had doubled in size, though still small. He produced his first minor symptom a couple of months later - but I could recognise it as a symptom and take him back to Chestergates immediately, and know that they are on the end of the phone if I ever need advice. The scan also picked up, of course, that he has seriously dilated ventricles, and this knowledge has helped to explain and deal with one painful episode (light sensitivity) which didn't seem to be a symptom of SM.

I have never used Oliver at stud; I had him scanned to find out the truth - and also to get his results and pedigree into the EBV programme. You don't need to live on tenterhooks all the time watching your dog's every move, but you can move swiftly if symptoms do start. But people are different - if discovering your dog has SM, even if he/she is still the same happy, energetic, asymptomatic dog they were yesterday, is going to cause you great distress, then don't scan until symptoms appear, which may be never.

Kate, Oliver and Aled

Soushiruiuma
14th December 2009, 12:44 PM
Guinness will get scanned in a few years, and the results will be registered with OFA. That means anyone looking up Guinness' parents, or other relatives will be able to see at least one MRI result from a related dog. Good or bad, it will be available.

Looking through the heart results from Guinness pedigree has been such a help, MRI is the next step to making sure breeding is done for the right reasons.

ByFloSin
14th December 2009, 02:36 PM
Guinness will get scanned in a few years, and the results will be registered with OFA. That means anyone looking up Guinness' parents, or other relatives will be able to see at least one MRI result from a related dog. Good or bad, it will be available.

Looking through the heart results from Guinness pedigree has been such a help, MRI is the next step to making sure breeding is done for the right reasons.

I totally agree with you Soushiruiuma.

Looking at SM and mvd from a breeding point of view, Brian, don't you think it would be useful for those who bred your dogs to know their health status. It's easy to blame poor breeding for the health problems that may arise at a future date, but how do breeders breed for health if they have no idea of the health status of their mature, sold on pups?

I have had two out of five of mine scanned so far and will have two of the others done as and when I can afford to pay for it. Rebel has been scanned but his breeder is not alive to know of his results. Bubbles breeder was sent a copy of all her test results and I will of course show similar consideration for the breeders of the further two even they are unlikely to be bred from. There is little point in scanning Holly as she already has a deformed front paw and dry eye/curly coat syndrome. She has now been spayed. Neither her breeder nor the owner of the stud have shown much, if any, interest in either her condition or treatment, so future testing without symptoms seems superfluous.

If there's a case for ethical breeding then surely there has to be one for ethical pet ownership?

Mindysmom
14th December 2009, 05:45 PM
For me - all my dogs are neutered (well Rylie will be soon) so I wouldn't scan without symptoms. I'm of the opinion that anaesthetic is not risk free and I always weigh the risk/benefit anytime I make that choice for either myself or my dogs.

WoodHaven
14th December 2009, 05:58 PM
Guinness will get scanned in a few years, and the results will be registered with OFA. That means anyone looking up Guinness' parents, or other relatives will be able to see at least one MRI result from a related dog. Good or bad, it will be available.

Looking through the heart results from Guinness pedigree has been such a help, MRI is the next step to making sure breeding is done for the right reasons.

I have a couple of my dogs CHIC'd and I don't recall their MRI's being placed online.

Karlin
14th December 2009, 06:33 PM
I also don't think OFA places scan information online...?

If people can get access to low cost scans and have dogs with pedigrees, particularly with some known show kennels in the 5 generation pedigree, I would like Mark absolutely encourage people to get their dogs scanned. This is HUGELY valuable to helping the whole breed -- especially if you have dog over age 5. The researchers badly, badly need info on older dogs as this is what helps them to understand progression. If you want to help the breed, scanning a registered dog will do 1000 times more than possibly any other single thing one could do (along with ONLY buying puppies from health-focused breeders that properly test).

In addition, a dog may have major syrinxes and be quietly tolerating pain that may not be picked up by owners. Many here have posted about how they had mistaken what must have been signs of pain for a shy dog, a little cute quirk, etc. If you haven;t scanned, you don;t know what your dog may be dealing with. In addition there is evidence -- and I have had this directly from both Geoff Skerritt and Clare Rusbridge -- that dogs with pre-syrinxes and small syrinxes can have progression slowed, halted or reversed if started on a CSF inhibitor like frusemide or cimetidine. Doing nothing because you don;t see any outward sign may mean progression that could have been halted is not stopped and the dog goes onto develop significant syrinxes.

I used to think that it was not important to scan asymptomatic dogs but due to the enormous value of scans from registered dogs, and due to the fact that a dog may be silently tolerating pain or may lose the chance to have progression slowed or stopped -- I absolutely believe in scanning if you have access to lower cost scans.

Soushiruiuma
14th December 2009, 08:26 PM
I could have sworn I found 1 MRI result on OFA's website. It wasn't a dog in Guinness' pedigree so I have no idea how to go about finding it again.

If they don't register those results we should see how to go about suggesting that they add it to their database.

Nicki
14th December 2009, 09:25 PM
This is a very tough one, but I do agree with Karlin that wherever possible we should be getting our Cavaliers scanned.

I think we all know enough to be going into scanning prepared that it may not be good news - and although that is hard to cope with, it does give our dogs the best chance of early treatment and a long life.

Perhaps if Teddy had been scanned earlier {I had to push my vet to book him in for a scan, although this was 3 1/2 years ago} and started treatment earlier - he had been symptomatic for a while - he would be better now. By the time he was scanned, he had several large and quite a few small syrinxes, which have worsened - he has been rescanned. The reports have all been sent to Sarah Blott at the AHT - as I do with every health test.

This is the best tool we have to ensure that the EBVs are going to be accurate - obviously show people only keep the best 1 or 2 puppies from a litter, and if only those are scanned, it will skew the results.

So I would encourage everyone to take advantage of health screening - even if possible attend shows as there is often free cardiologist heart testing, and reduced rate eye testing.

Low cost MRIs are maybe more difficult as the scheme was orginally set up for breeding dogs, but if carers are prepared to scan their {asymptomatic} dogs, then I hope this can be available. I believe Mark is organising the next date for March 2010? Perhaps our US members can start helping their breeders to pressurise for low cost schemes?

Low cost {mini} scans are not suitable for symptomatic dogs, as has been discussed at length before...

MARK MARSHALL
14th December 2009, 09:41 PM
Nicki,

I personally will never accept that a dog has SM until the MRI scan shows me a Syrinx !

I spoke to GS last week and the question of bad ears and CM was mentioned.

CM will cause severe pain and Ears similarly can cause severe discomfort. (I do of course accept that you already know this.)

Consequently I say, dont think your dog has SM until it is confirmed and how can medicine be administered if the cause is not 100% confirmed ?

Yet another reason to have a scan.

Indeed, when we went to 'Stone Lion', the form specifically asked for the behaviour of the dog and asked for all symptoms to be listed.

The next 'bus' is scheduled for 18th MARCH 2010.

Mark Marshall.

Karlin
14th December 2009, 10:00 PM
Pain from CM alone is fairly rare, though -- but when it is the cause, I really don't think one can draw any real difference between the implications of having SM or CM. Indeed many of the US neurologists do not use the terms SM and CM, they use the term COMS to indicate a syndrome including BOTH as both can be a cause of pain. Having the addition of syrinxes can make the problem worse, definitely, but I think it is perhaps a bit self-deluding to believe a symtpomatic dog with 'only' CM should be seen as somehow that much better or preferable -- the issue of pain remains the same and the choices are the same: (same) medications or (same) surgery. Fortunately for the breed -- perhaps because of the way dogs walk with their heads horizontal, who knows -- dogs with CM don't have anything like the occurence of pain with CM alone that humans do. Most humans get severe pain from their CM alone and sometimes have the misfortune to then get syrinxes, SM, as a secondary problem.

Nicki is of course right to remind that a mini scan for breeder purposes is not really adequate for ongoing care of a symptomatic dog.

Medications can be trialled if someone does not want to have or cannot manage a n MRI. It isn;t ideal but PSOM doesn't respond to gabapantin or frusemide as far as I understand so if pain lessens with these medications it is an indication you are dealing with CM and/or SM. PSOM can cause some but not nearly the same array of symptoms and I understand does NOT cause air scratching so if you are seeing that, you re very unlikely to be seeing problems from PSOM. As far as I know CM/SM is the only set of conditions that cause air scratching. An MRI is as they say the 'gold standard' but it is beyond the reach of some people and their dog can be pretty well diagnosed on the basis of clinical symptoms and treated.

Margaret C
14th December 2009, 10:31 PM
This is, I think, another of the decisions that can only be made by the owner...........

The benefits that this information can give for the future of the breed through the EBV programme are immeasurable.

The information it can give to the breeder ( who should always be informed of the result, whether good or bad ) will be invaluable to their breeding programme.

It will benefit the dog if there are early signs of SM that have been missed, medication can change a quiet, unsociable, couch potato into a lively relaxed little dog.

I do not think that any cavalier owner who knows about SM can ever completely dismiss the worry from their mind.
That is a criticism that has been levelled at the film PDE and those of us who took part, but we did not invent SM, it was already there and spreading rapidly. Cavalier owners needed to know there was good reason to be concerned.

It may help some owners to know scan results and have vague worries confirmed or proved wrong. Others may not be able to cope with a positive diagnosis and their pleasure in their pet will be submerged completely in their dread of the eventual outcome.

Like the decision to have SM surgery, or the decision when to euthanise, I feel that this is a decision that the owner must feel able to make according to their own comfort zone.
They are not breeders, they do not carry the responsibility in the same way as all breeders do, but if they feel able to help in a partnership of breeders and owners, then what a wonderful gesture that will be.

Karlin
14th December 2009, 10:44 PM
Margaret, good post. Thanks for that perspective. :thmbsup:

waldor
14th December 2009, 11:17 PM
.....The scan revealed he has cm. Clare Rusbridge has put him on Cimetadine and a mild dose of Previcox. The reason for putting him on the Cimetadine is for preventative measures.


Would the Cimetadine prevent the CM from progressing to SM? This is something I have missed in all my reading, so I'm truly curious. Over here in the U.S., I don't know how well the vets are educated in all this, as so many are in the UK.

BTW, where does one go for the MRI scan here in the U.S.? A regular vet, Internal Medicine specialist, or a veterinary school? I may have Sophie scanned next year, as she scratches at her ears a lot, and all over her body.

WoodHaven
14th December 2009, 11:26 PM
Nicki,

I personally will never accept that a dog has SM until the MRI scan shows me a Syrinx !

I spoke to GS last week and the question of bad ears and CM was mentioned.

CM will cause severe pain and Ears similarly can cause severe discomfort. (I do of course accept that you already know this.)

Consequently I say, dont think your dog has SM until it is confirmed and how can medicine be administered if the cause is not 100% confirmed ?

Yet another reason to have a scan.

Indeed, when we went to 'Stone Lion', the form specifically asked for the behaviour of the dog and asked for all symptoms to be listed.

The next 'bus' is scheduled for 18th MARCH 2010.

Mark Marshall.

There are dogs that are in neuro pain that don't have a syrinx.
I have two with scoliosis, that are sensitive to aggressive grooming. I decided not to pay 1600.USD to so an SM MRI and tell me that they have SM. IF they show any progression of symptoms, or ANY pain-- they will get the full MRI in preparation for surgery.
They are active, wide eyed- running, jumping-- neither show any pain symptoms.

Soushiruiuma
15th December 2009, 12:09 AM
Waldor,

MRI machines are expensive, as far as I know the only places it's realistic to expect to find them is at a vet school.

WoodHaven
15th December 2009, 12:16 AM
Here is a list of Board certified Neurologists by states:
http://www.cavalierhealth.org/neurologists.htm

avejo
15th December 2009, 04:42 AM
This is, I think, another of the decisions that can only be made by the owner...........

The benefits that this information can give for the future of the breed through the EBV programme are immeasurable.

The information it can give to the breeder ( who should always be informed of the result, whether good or bad ) will be invaluable to their breeding programme.

It will benefit the dog if there are early signs of SM that have been missed, medication can change a quiet, unsociable, couch potato into a lively relaxed little dog.

I do not think that any cavalier owner who knows about SM can ever completely dismiss the worry from their mind.
That is a criticism that has been levelled at the film PDE and those of us who took part, but we did not invent SM, it was already there and spreading rapidly. Cavalier owners needed to know there was good reason to be concerned.

It may help some owners to know scan results and have vague worries confirmed or proved wrong. Others may not be able to cope with a positive diagnosis and their pleasure in their pet will be submerged completely in their dread of the eventual outcome.

Like the decision to have SM surgery, or the decision when to euthanise, I feel that this is a decision that the owner must feel able to make according to their own comfort zone.
They are not breeders, they do not carry the responsibility in the same way as all breeders do, but if they feel able to help in a partnership of breeders and owners, then what a wonderful gesture that will be.

I feel like this is the very debate I've been having. I spoke with a vet and a neurologist who told me I could go forward with an MRI "if I wanted" - but did not make the recommendation that I do so. This was based on my concerns about occasional scratching while on lead, a lot of sleeping during the day, and my own awareness about how prevalent SM is in the breed (I've read extensively on this site as well as on cavalierhealth). I have a full-pedigree registered dog that I adopted/rehomed who is 7 years old. I know any information would help the breeder (and the breed) and would put my mind to rest - and allow me to stop worrying and watching and start treating if needed. But due to her age, I worry that going under is not without risk. So my problem? Without a "you should get an MRI" from a vet and/or neurologist, I feel like I'm volunteering my dog for a procedure I don't know that she needs. I'm not a vet, and while I can read all I want about SM symptoms and watch youtube videos, I rely on those with degrees and experience to help me make the best decision. I love the breed, and I want to contribute to future generations, but I also love my dog, and the thought of losing her kills me. I feel both incredibly selfish and like I'm looking out for Lady's best interests - all at the same time. And I still don't know what to do.....

Tania
15th December 2009, 07:52 AM
[QUOTE=waldor;346636]Would the Cimetadine prevent the CM from progressing to SM?

I am not qualified to answer this. I can only tell you what has happened to Dougall. We assumed Dougall was a quiet lazy dog. He showed discomfort when you touch his back (it shudders when you lightly touch it) and he lowers his head if you go to touch it. Clare Rusbridge mentioned the Cimetidene would help prevent the cm developing. The previcox seems to have relieved his back by about 70%. Dougall is more lively and bouncy and behaves more like a 2 year old should. I would also mention Molly who has sm and had a large pre-syrinx (the scan is on Clares website). This Syrinx was forming while the scan was being done! We scanned Molly 8 months later, the pre-syrinx has vanished. We were lucky to catch it at this stage which stopped it in its tracks.

Brian M
15th December 2009, 11:19 AM
Hi

I thought this thread would attract varying comments and MC/CF and Karlins and all others have all opened lines of thought .I do have 5 generation pedigrees on all four girls and I know scanning them especially Daisy and Lily would help our breed ,but I feel if by putting them through this procedure may result in unwellcome news which would then cast a dark cloud over us it would be a step too far for me . So from my purely selfish view as a pet owner I am afraid I adopt the point of view no news is good news and I shall face any bad news it ever develops .But I thank all for their generous guidance on this personal and and difficult question.:)

MadPip
15th December 2009, 01:59 PM
Brian,
thank you for opening up such an interesting discussion.

The decision to scan or not is one that I'm thinking a lot about, not least because Maddie will be 5 years old on Friday, and she has SM on both sides of her pedigree, (Margaret Cs Monty), and I think has the same sire as the Blenheim from PDE who won at the show.

However, she is showing no symptoms, and although she is a stoical little girl her behaviour, especially at agility, shows me when she's not 100% for any reason or in pain, and she is currently flying round the agility courses and then barking at me to have another go! So, I shall carry on thinking about scanning, but haven't yet made up my mind.

Cathy T
15th December 2009, 03:30 PM
I spoke with a vet and a neurologist who told me I could go forward with an MRI "if I wanted"


I was in the exact same position. Shelby's symptoms are very mild, I doubt anyone except an expert would she what I was seeing. I was told I "could" MRI and also told that was the only way to confirm what we felt I was seeing. Had she been more symptomatic I think the decision would have been easier. I talked to lots of people....breeders, friends, vets, other Cavalier owners with and without SM affected dogs. I got so many varying opinions I knew it was a decision I personally would have to make. So I made the decision to MRI. I already pretty much knew what we would find but had no idea to what degree. Shelby has a mild herniation and a long syrinx. At least now I know for certain what is going on in her little body. She was 6 years old when I had her MRI'd a few months back. The anesthesia portion really wasn't a huge concern. The surgeon who did the MRI anesthesizes many dogs every single day. She knows Shelby inside and out and I knew she was in great hands.

I won't be MRI'ing Jake without a reason. He is completely symptom free and to MRI him at this point would not do anything for me. However.....if he had an important pedigree, someone else wanted to pay for the MRI (upwards of $1600) and the scans would be of benefit....sure, I would do it.

Margaret C
16th December 2009, 12:30 AM
Brian,
thank you for opening up such an interesting discussion.

The decision to scan or not is one that I'm thinking a lot about, not least because Maddie will be 5 years old on Friday, and she has SM on both sides of her pedigree, (Margaret Cs Monty), and I think has the same sire as the Blenheim from PDE who won at the show.

However, she is showing no symptoms, and although she is a stoical little girl her behaviour, especially at agility, shows me when she's not 100% for any reason or in pain, and she is currently flying round the agility courses and then barking at me to have another go! So, I shall carry on thinking about scanning, but haven't yet made up my mind.

Syringomyelia is a very complex and puzzling condition and the fact you will have SM affected dogs in the pedigree ( There will be many more than Monty, but the majority were just never acknowledged by their owners ) does not mean that your Maddie will have it.

There are many SM affected offspring and grandchildren from Monty, but he also had some clear scanned children, one recently MRI'd clear at 9 years old, and her two scanned offspring are Grade A cavaliers as well.

If Maddie's sire was the Malvern show BIS winner, then there is no doubt that a scan of your little girl would give the researchers some very valuable information about the inheritance of SM, but I understand how reluctant you would be to look for trouble when Maddie is so lively and full of life.

Margaret C
16th December 2009, 12:47 AM
So my problem? Without a "you should get an MRI" from a vet and/or neurologist, I feel like I'm volunteering my dog for a procedure I don't know that she needs. I'm not a vet, and while I can read all I want about SM symptoms and watch youtube videos, I rely on those with degrees and experience to help me make the best decision. I love the breed, and I want to contribute to future generations, but I also love my dog, and the thought of losing her kills me. I feel both incredibly selfish and like I'm looking out for Lady's best interests - all at the same time. And I still don't know what to do.....

Thank you avejo, you sum up exactly the dilemma we all face, breeders and pet owners alike, with this horrible condition.

I feel incredibly grateful to any pet owner that will scan & give information for the breed, but they have the right to choose not to do it.

I would say here that I do not feel that breeders have a right to the same discretion.
No breeder has to breed. If they choose to produce puppies they owe it to the breed, their pups, and the eventual owners to know the SM status of any cavalier they breed from.
If they don't feel able to put their cavalier through the procedure, then they should not breed.

MadPip
16th December 2009, 11:58 AM
Syringomyelia is a very complex and puzzling condition and the fact you will have SM affected dogs in the pedigree ( There will be many more than Monty, but the majority were just never acknowledged by their owners ) does not mean that your Maddie will have it.

There are many SM affected offspring and grandchildren from Monty, but he also had some clear scanned children, one recently MRI'd clear at 9 years old, and her two scanned offspring are Grade A cavaliers as well.

If Maddie's sire was the Malvern show BIS winner, then there is no doubt that a scan of your little girl would give the researchers some very valuable information about the inheritance of SM, but I understand how reluctant you would be to look for trouble when Maddie is so lively and full of life.

Sorry Margaret, I didn't make myself too clear, I think the Malvern BIS winner is a half brother to Maddie.

I know there are likely to be other SM affected dogs in Maddie's pedigree other than Monty, but thanks to your honesty I do know about him. Each spring/ summer when she starts to scratch (pollen allergies) I hold my breath until the first frosts of autumn/ winter to make sure that she will stop scratching then. I guess we all worry about SM with our dogs.

I suppose I am torn between thinking that as she will be 5 soon scanning her could give some useful information to the researchers, but then I worry if a syrinx was found despite her being asymptomatic, I would treat her differently and not enjoy her life as much, if that makes sense.

Strangely I don't worry so much about Pippin, probably because I don't have that much information about the dogs in his pedigree, although I do still watch him for any subtle signs.

I guess I'll just ponder the scanning question some more.

Tania
16th December 2009, 12:38 PM
[QUOTE=MadPip;346843]Sorry Margaret, I didn't make myself too clear, I think the Malvern BIS winner is a half brother to Maddie.


I would treat her differently and not enjoy her life as much, if that makes sense.

If something was found if you had her scanned of course you would treat her differently. At least she would be treated at least the progression can be either slowed down or stopped.
.

Kate H
16th December 2009, 03:10 PM
Each spring/ summer when she starts to scratch (pollen allergies) I hold my breath until the first frosts of autumn/ winter to make sure that she will stop scratching then. .. I worry if a syrinx was found despite her being asymptomatic, I would treat her differently and not enjoy her life as much, if that makes sense.

Seems to me you're worrying anyway - so why not worry to some positive purpose - IF she scans with SM? Just because Maddie has relatives with SM (like every other Cavalier in existence!) doesn't inevitably mean a positive diagnosis - the BIS winner's SM may have come from the side that Maddie doesn't have, if they only share one parent. Except that a parent known to have SM, even if asymptomatic, is more likely to produce symptomatic offspring, no-one really seems to know the mode of inheritance, so it is impossible to point the finger at any particular unscanned (or scanned, for that matter, if you don't know the result of the scan) dog and say that's where my dog gets his or her SM from. Margaret's Monty gets mentioned simply because she was honest and courageous enough to 'go public' at a time when many breeders were unaware of how common SM was becoming and low cost scans didn't exist. I picked up on my Oliver's grandfather's SM from talking to breeders, his own breeder told me about his symptomatic half-sister - but actually it could all be coincidence and not inheritance at all! Until the inheritance is sorted out, we're all floundering around in the dark to some extent - this is why it is such a nightmare, and why some breeders can use it as a cop-out and say that there's no definitive proof that using a positive but asymptomatic dog at stud will produce symptomatic puppies, so why bother to scan.

And speaking as one who has to do it, yes, you do treat your dog with a syrinx and no symptoms differently - you treasure every day you have with them with immense gratitude for what they are and what they give you, and rejoice for every day they can continue to live normal, happy lives. And then take them for a nice walk!

Long may Maddie continue to show no signs!

Kate, Oliver and Aled

waldor
16th December 2009, 03:36 PM
Sandy/Woodhaven Cavaliers - thank you for that link. I have bookmarked it, in case I ever feel I need to pursue an MRI. Looks like the vet schools are the place, and there are three all within a 4-hour drive.

WoodHaven
16th December 2009, 03:49 PM
Seems to me you're worrying anyway - so why not worry to some positive purpose - IF she scans with SM? Just because Maddie has relatives with SM (like every other Cavalier in existence!) doesn't inevitably mean a positive diagnosis - the BIS winner's SM may have come from the side that Maddie doesn't have, if they only share one parent. Except that a parent known to have SM, even if asymptomatic, is more likely to produce symptomatic offspring, no-one really seems to know the mode of inheritance, so it is impossible to point the finger at any particular unscanned (or scanned, for that matter, if you don't know the result of the scan) dog and say that's where my dog gets his or her SM from. Margaret's Monty gets mentioned simply because she was honest and courageous enough to 'go public' at a time when many breeders were unaware of how common SM was becoming and low cost scans didn't exist. I picked up on my Oliver's grandfather's SM from talking to breeders, his own breeder told me about his symptomatic half-sister - but actually it could all be coincidence and not inheritance at all! Until the inheritance is sorted out, we're all floundering around in the dark to some extent - this is why it is such a nightmare, and why some breeders can use it as a cop-out and say that there's no definitive proof that using a positive but asymptomatic dog at stud will produce symptomatic puppies, so why bother to scan.

And speaking as one who has to do it, yes, you do treat your dog with a syrinx and no symptoms differently - you treasure every day you have with them with immense gratitude for what they are and what they give you, and rejoice for every day they can continue to live normal, happy lives. And then take them for a nice walk!

Long may Maddie continue to show no signs!

Kate, Oliver and Aled

I wouldn't scan a pet that wasn't showing signs. Why-- not having a syrinx today doesn't mean in 6 months they couldn't have SM. You could drive yourself absolutely bananas worrying.
I enjoy and treasure each day -- because you don't know what tomorrow will bring. The dogs(or I or you) could: get in an accident, blow a heart valve, have an embolism at any time.