View Full Version : Supporting one another- want to share one breeder (not naming) that took action

5th January 2011, 02:07 PM
I thought this was inspiring and even though the person (breeder) does not want to be recognized, I will not due to not mentioning breeders on the forum but to tell this. We have discussed that if breeders think scanning is too much they should not breed. Well it was a lot for them but instead of saying that as an excuse this one person took action that is great. Thanks to her dedication, she worked with AnimalScan to lower the price of MRI's for breeding purposes is now $600.

This is what she said parapharsed because screening MRI at NC State is cost-prohibitive for most breeders. (By screening MRI, I mean that the dog has no symptoms of SM, but the owner wants to have an MRI done to confirm there is no SM visible on the MRI)

Bill (in marketing) has been talking to the owner of AnimalScan and they have agreed to significantly reduce the price of their screening MRIs.

The guy who now owns the AnimalScan company and numerous MRI machines from coast to coast has reduced the cost of a screening MRI and starting this month, any SCREENING MRI conducted on any dog at any location throughout the US whose machine is owned by AnimalScan will be ~$600 rather than the typical $1000 to $2000 that has historically been charged.

Butóthese are only for screening MRIs. AnimalScan is trying to work with breeders to make this an affordable screening tool.

So, for dogs that have symptoms of SM, a full MRI is still being recommended, and because it is a much more thorough, time-consuming test, the cost will still be the usual $1000 to $2000 that the vet school has always charged.

I told her thanks and how this effort should be recognized and she said,

"So, I donít want anyone to get the impression that Iíve done anything hugeóI havenít. I just continued to follow up and basically beg!! J

Even though this technically does not lower the cost we unfortunately have to pay as pet owners, it tells a story of how one breeder helped and did not use the excuse "it's too expensive". She doesn't seek attention, credit, anything other than as she said " I want to do what I can to keep other cavaliers from having to live with SM. Best wishes to you and to your friend who are also dedicated to this same cause!"


Thanks to everyone helping each other.

5th January 2011, 02:37 PM
Actually many breeders have been fundamental in bringing in low cost scanning programmes in several geographies. :thmbsup: Some breeders helped initiate the UK scheme and several US schemes are already in place or have been offered at breeder request to club groups in the past. AnimalScan had dropped their prices already for breeders at least 2-3 years ago at least in some locations so I am delighted to know they will do this across the US and lower prices a bit further.

But it is not going to make any difference if the clubs themselves do not embrace these health issues and these programmes. How many breeders read the few SM discussion sites? Hardly a drop in the ocean of the various national or regional club memberships. Hardly any will know these screening initiatives are there. The active membership of the SM Yahoo list for example is quite small and breeder members are a subset of it.

If clubs had taken on the task of working for low cost scans rather than leaving it to some hard working individuals, schemes would surely have been in place months or even years now. And clubs simply MUST use their websites, club meetings and mailing lists to inform their members about SM and MVD, about screening locations and recommended breeding practice. It is great that more and more are coming online ( and Rod has a comprehensive list of the already-existing low cost schemes in the US, for example, at www.cavalierhealth.org) -- but why aren't the clubs keeping such lists prominent online along with a similarly detailed list of research and treatment resources for breeders? :confused:

5th January 2011, 02:52 PM
This is Rod's list. :D


There are already several AnimalScan centres listed (yay! :D They have been quite supportive) -- and actually, to take some credit :lol:, and just so that history does not get rewritten here... :) ... now that I look at the list it was Dr Meg Alonso a couple of years ago who herself and without any approach or at the time, support from breed clubs, initiated a proposal to offer low cost screening by approaching me via my SM website. We discussed what was needed and possible costs at some length -- what might work for them to cover their costs but also provide a good service to breeders -- then I put her in touch with Dr Rusbridge who helped with scanning protocol, and I also put her in touch with the CKCSC in the area, which gave support. They brought in the first low cost scan then in Pennsylvania as a result and as you can see from Rod's list, this one and several others were already offering low cost scans with some at even lower than $600 in some locations. I am delighted they will bring in low cost scans nationwide but think to be fair here, it was the doctor at the centre and a pet owner that actually initiated the AnimalScan lower cost programme a couple of years ago. The west coast centre followed and has offered low cost scans for a good while as well, as has Ohio. I am really glad someone has continued to pressure on lowering cost -- this is truly fantastic. I am not sure where the other centres are; it would help to have them listed by state on the club sites! LIVS also started on the low cost initiative via their own researchers to offer low cost scans; it wasn't from approaches from breeders. In other cases, breeders (and in Florida, a pet owner) have lobbied to get low cost scans -- *for breeders* (remember these do not benefit pet owners with affected dogs, so quite a few non-breeders have tried to improve the situation for breeders, quietly and diligently and without seeking credit). There has been unfortunately a lot more individual rather than group effort over the past half decade on low cost scans and if the clubs could step in and start coordinating and supporting and highlighting these scattered initiatives, rather than leaving them to individual breeders and private websites to highlight it would be a big step forward.

5th January 2011, 04:31 PM
Are these low cost scans only for breeders? I have an 8 year old male who is heart clear and symptomless for SM. He was bred twice (in the US) but then retired, neutered and placed in my (pet) home. He was bred in the UK at one of the more well-known kennels, and although he doesn't figure predominantly as a stud dog, his close relatives certainly do.

I would seriously consider having him scanned and paying the $600 myself to help research if indeed this would be valuable information. Would the feedback on an older symptomless dog be useful for research in the UK and the US? Is this the aim of Rupert's Fund in the UK? He, his father and his father's litter brother were all imported to the US some 7 years ago. His father and uncle were shown and bred (in the US) to a much greater extent than my boy; both were AKC champions.


5th January 2011, 04:51 PM
I think they would do the scan -- don't think they are only for breeders but not very useful as noted for diagnosis and treatment as the feedback for care isn't included; hence would be more for breeders to grade dogs. At the same time anyone could go for an informational scan on this scheme I should think. But let me make a few enquiries Pat! Sounds like he could be a useful dog for research. :)

5th January 2011, 05:41 PM

Actually this person is on the yahoo list. I know she wasn't trying to take credit. I asked someone else b/c a couple months ago someone mentioned wanting lower cost here and pr would be good for iams (at the time they owned the machine)

Anyway, in nc actually ella's neurologist (dr. Brofmann) was listed as low cost $1100 (for breeders) and this person was trying to get them to help. Obviously animalscan would do this for pr.

You are right that this should be made aware and clubs should enforce etc. I don't know how regional clubs work but I do know this club has several that want to which makes others & so on. If that started above it would have the same reaction.

Thanks to the individuals and I still don't understand how clubs will not use things for good pr and to make share this information. I know that livs was far away and some were going to florida etc.

I think its good to focus on positives which I don't understand why others (clubs) don't follow and set an example. It is who we look to for information at first.

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