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penquite
1st March 2012, 12:04 PM
People may be interested in reading the following link

http://www.cawc.org.uk/sites/default/files/CAWC comment on Pedigree Dogs Exposed II 28 02 12.pdf

The last paragraph is particularly interesting.

Also another link that may be of interest.

http://www.bva.co.uk/news/2726.aspx

Karlin
2nd March 2012, 11:32 PM
Thanks for those!

I thought this was a good observation from CAWC -- pointing out that while there is a breeder role that is absolutely central to dog breed health, so too, there is a BUYER role. Too many people still do not know enough about what to look for and what to avoid when seeking a puppy of a particular breed (hence better education is needed -- many people unknowingly make the wrong decision by trusting the wrong people), but in too many cases still -- they do know, but prioritise selfish reasons such as cost and impatience (eg the desire to get a puppy right away) to argue they have a right to buy from a substandard breeder/petshop etc. :(


CAWC recognises that despite promising initiatives, a culture shift amongst many dog breeders themselves still needs to occur to ensure that welfare problems associated with breeding are recognised and that there is a willingness to solve them. CAWC believes that alongside this commitment from breeders and breed societies, better awareness amongst buyers of puppies and dogs has significant potential to bring about improvements. If only healthy dogs are bought, then only healthy dogs will be bred. This will require further educational campaigns to ensure that the beneficial influence of informed consumers in improving dog welfare can be realised.

The whole breeding scene would change swiftly if only buyers just refused to buy from any but health testing breeders. It is not just breeders, whether show or backyard or puppy farmers, who make critical choices and can destroy a breed. We make them too when we decided to buy a dog, and we need to make the right decisions, doing the research & ensuring our money backs only health focused, testing breeders :).

MishathePooh
2nd March 2012, 11:41 PM
A complete ban on the breeding of brachycephalics for breathing problems is not the answer even if it were possible, but the success of outbreeding to produce much healthier alternatives is a practical way forward. This was well illustrated by the example in the programme of the Dalmatian and it was encouraging that the Kennel Club recognised this dog which had been outcrossed with an English pointer to introduce a new gene to eliminate an inherited disease.

When PDE2 said that Cavaliers are doomed, I was rather upset. I myself thought outcrossing could save the breed.

Karlin
3rd March 2012, 12:00 AM
Outcrossing can be very difficult and is never an easy fix -- especially for cavaliers because SM is not going to be easy to remove as a gene -- much easier to reinstate the gene the dalmations needed from a single outcross. It may be that the whole breed needs to be reconstructed. It may be that (as some researchers feel) IF breeders tested and followed protocols they would see significant changes within a few generations, without any need to outcross. But without a law that compels a certain approach to breeding, little will happen. Even with dalmations -- there may be a potential solution there to a serious breed issue, but the vast majority are bred still from existing stock, not the outcross version.

I do think there's no future for cavaliers unless there is a governing body that can demand certain approaches to breeding and it needs to bring in puppy farmers and the person down the street who decides to breed a litter or two. I feel a consumer rights bill dovetailed with a mandated testing and breeding approach by breed (and include crosses, which can just have all the health issues of both parent breeds -- there are cavalier crosses with SM)) would also hasten improvement.

As it is lots of the possible proposed breeds for outcrossing have their own serious breed issues.

Margaret C
3rd March 2012, 12:08 AM
When PDE2 said that Cavaliers are doomed, I was rather upset. I myself thought outcrossing could save the breed.

Yes, but breeders have got to agree to incorporate what they consider a mongrel into their breeding.

I believe it took over thirty years for the line of outcrossed Dalmations to be accepted despite the fact it was just one Pointer that was used back in the 1970s.

Breeders do have hang ups about the 'purity' of their chosen breed.

MishathePooh
3rd March 2012, 05:29 AM
Karlin, even if you got laws in place in the UK, people might sidestep them by importing US dogs. And as laws are different state-by-state, I can't see any such thing being implemented here. Truly depressing. I think they should do the ferret thing and have strict screening for breeders, and anyone who does not have a breeding license cannot have an intact animal. Would be impossible to enforce with current conditions though.

Karlin
3rd March 2012, 06:02 AM
I don't think importing dogs would make much difference myself as they'd just fall under the same system once imported, but enforcement would be the challenge. That's why any scheme would have to be tied to 1) ability to show and win championships; 2) KC registration and 3) a consumer law that would require breeders to have significant liability if a puppy they sold goes on to develop a known breed condition where they cannot provide proof that they tested both parents and did their best to breed for health.

At the moment I find it increasingly extraordinary that cavalier breeders can fail to scan, yet continue to breed, fail to cardiologist test, and ignore breeding protocols.

tuppenlil
3rd March 2012, 09:46 AM
At the moment I find it increasingly extraordinary that cavalier breeders can fail to scan, yet continue to breed, fail to cardiologist test, and ignore breeding protocols.

To be fair, many breeders DO health test - but as results are not published this cannot be determined without asking the breeder directly.
Having no published results also allows some breeders not testing to claim that they do, or they test only when young - when this breed has LATE ONSET diseases.

Until the BVA schemes for CM/SM and hearts publish all the health test results, this situation remains. When ALL results are publicly available buyers will be able to see for themselves where to go to buy a puppy with the best chance of a healthy future.

In order to stop puppy farmers churning out puppies with no parents' health tests at all, there has to be a mechanism whereby ALL breeders can publicly demonstrate that they have health tested and at what ages.
This of course, applies to all breeds, not just Cavaliers.

Maggie

KingCav
4th March 2012, 01:27 PM
I am new to this Forum and have been reading all these posts with interest. I saw this on Facebook today and feel more confused than ever.



As the individual who originally proposed at the CKCS Club AGM 10 years ago that the “Club liaise with Dr Rusbridge in order to discover the extent to which the condition (now) known as SM affected our breed” A task which fell to the then Health Liaison officer Mrs Margaret Carter. I feel responsible for the situation which has developed and would therefore like the “right to reply”

The program cited that 70% of all Cavaliers over 6 years of age will have asymptomatic SM based on a study of 555 Cavaliers. This study does not clarify how many of the representative sample were of this age. With an estimated population of 100,000 dogs , 555 dogs are a mere drop in the ocean. My own personal experience disputes this claim. I have had five dogs scanned over 5 years of age only, one (20%) has central canal dilation of 2mm (a syrinx) she is asymptomatic.

We have been told that this condition is progressive and degenerative based on a sample of just 12 dogs. Again my own experience disputes this statement.
Of my five dogs scanned over 5 years of age, four of which have been rescanned - one (25%) has been progressive and degenerative, one (25%) has remained static and two (50%) have improved, central canal dilation, present on their original scans was absent on their later ones.

When this matter was raised at a meeting in October 2010 the explanation given was a “difference in interpretation.” Acceptable in the case of one dog whose scans were reviewed by different individuals but, illogical in the case where it was reviewed by the same person.

We are told that of 564 dogs scanned, only 6 would be graded as CM grade 1. Yet dogs in the UK, Canada and the USA with this mild form of CM and graded clear of all forms of SM no oedema, no presyrinx, no central canal dilation, present with symptoms associated with SM a condition they don’t have. The explanation given for these symptoms is that CM alone can cause pain. So if mild CM causes symptoms why are the 558 remaining dogs not all scratching as well? Again illogical. As one of the owners of these dogs explains, to not know why she is suffering is unbearable.

We are told this breed is stoic yet another statement I dispute - if you had heard the fuss my young dog made when he recently broke a nail most would described this breed as “whimpy” almost bordering on pathetic. Yet we are suppose to believe they are suffering in silence!

As recently as August 2011 there was a study to establish the correct head position for scanning they have found the degree of cerebellar herniation was significantly worse in dogs with a flexed compared to an extended head position. As someone who has spent hundreds if not thousands of ’s scanning my dog. I ask do we now definitively have the correct scanning position?

It will be assumed that breeding the equivalent A to A dogs will eradicate this condition from the breed explain that to the breeder who has done this for several generation yet her young dog has just been scanned with 3.5 mm of CCD or the breeders who get completely clear dogs from two D parents. Health schemes are suppose to prevent “affected” dogs from being produced. If following the breeding protocols can’t achieve this, many ask if the science is correct?

Less than ten males over 6 have scanned clear of SM. Far too small a sample for a healthy gene pool. Publication of results will encourage the use of these animals. Many ask what if the science is wrong and this animals although scanned clear become or are symptomatic ? We are being told that genetic diversity needs to be maintained why would we support a scheme that would encourage the exact opposite and support the popular sire syndrome (by scan results rather than show ring success)

At the time of the airing of PDE2 Cavalier breeders are being expected to embrace a scheme whole-heartedly which still has no published explanation notes, no adequate appeals procedure and fails to give a logical scientific answer to the points I have raised. Many ask why we are expected to adopt a scheme in black and white for a condition which has obvious shades of grey ?
I am not saying that we should not scan, as a diagnostic tool, the scheme does have merit, it can not be right that dogs have fluid filled cavities within their spinal column. However, it is the dogs which are symptomatic, in distress and upsetting for their owners which need to be removed from this breed IRRESPECTIVE of how well they scan

As much as PDE has for some people given relief to those whose dogs present with symptoms and they finally feel they have an answer to their condition. It has caused the premature deaths of many others, For example the young bitch who 8 days after been diagnosed with SM died in agony from a undiagnosed diaphragmatic hernia or 10 month puppy who at my instantaneous had a full body scan and was finally and too late treated for the meningitis which was the cause of his pain.

To date less than 15% of the Cavaliers bred by me have not reached beyond double figures through accident or ill health, of the 80 + Cavaliers I have bred over 20 years I have lost contact with five. Most I have seen at various intervals throughout their lifetime. Therefore in common with many breeders who have never seen any dog bred by them show the symptoms being described as CM/SM. I find it impossible to comprehend that our breed is “riddled” with this condition. Bridgette Evans

Margaret C
4th March 2012, 02:19 PM
Yes, I was the Cavalier Health Representative at the time and I remember asking Bridgette if she would put this question at the AGM as it would look better if the proposal came from the floor of the meeting.

It appears from the concerns expressed that the writer is worried that people will breed from cavaliers in pain because they have scans that show no SM.

Possibly the writer is not aware of Clare Rusbridge's CM/SM breeding guideline summary for all relevant toy breeds: http://www.veterinary-neurologist.co.uk/syringomyelia/docs/BVA_KC_summary_download.pdf
This guideline clearly shows that dogs that are symptomatic, with clinical signs of CM and/or SM, are in the red 'Do Not Breed' section.

In fact the advice from Specialists has always been that no symptomatic dog should be used for breeding irrespective of how well they scan.

I find it interesting that a study of 500+ asymptomatic cavaliers can be dismissed as a mere drop in the ocean in one sentence but in the next her personal experience, based on a very small number of mostly unscanned dogs, are used to argue against a carefully thought out BVA/KC Scheme.

Karlin
4th March 2012, 06:32 PM
Yes, these things come up now and then and are always widely circulated by certain circles of (the same old) breeders. Funny thing is -- just read the comments by other breeders around such posts and it is quickly apparent that most of these people hardly know a thing about SM, have hardly followed any research, yet are merrily breeding and showing as if this breed health catastrophe doesn't exist. They rush to endorose and share any scrap that they hope gets them off the hook of responsible breeding :sl*p:.

It's another sad attempt by breeders to convince themselves that 1) the SM problem isn't that serious and 2) it is so darn confusing anyway that they cannot be expected to do anything, and now have an 'excuse' not to have to spend a penny on that costly testing and can go back to selling those now more lucrative puppies, and showing their dogs in self-imposed ignorant bliss.


I find it interesting that a study of 500+ asymptomatic cavaliers can be dismissed as a mere drop in the ocean in one sentence but in the next her personal experience, based on a very small number of mostly unscanned dogs, are used to argue against a carefully thought out BVA/KC Scheme.


Bingo.

I have watched breeders for almost a decade now complain that research trials were 'too small to be meaningful'. Yet, as Margaret notes, they are more than happy to draw uninformed, unprofessional, anecdotal conclusions based on their own tiny households of dogs or those of their friends. The more the results are not to their liking, the faster they are to start to ask questions about how meaningful the study sample was too (even in the case of the foetal tissue research supported by many breeders -- results were questioned and sample size criticised when results dovetailed with all the other research).

As more and more studies emerged, with larger and larger study samples of cavaliers including a sample of over 500 cavaliers, primarily owned by UK show breeders (a huge sample by any calculation, for a dog-oriented study), the overwhelming evidence remains that the incidence of SM is extremely high in this breed; that most symptomatic SM is strongly correlated to syrinxes, not CM alone; that SM is genetic; that there are definite patterns of inheritance. The fact that some dogs with mild CM sadly have severe pain is hardly disproof of any of this-- rather it underlines what researchers (human and dog) have been saying for some time (if any of these people EVER actually READ any studies :rolleyes:): that one key element of pain and progression in the condition seems to be the individual variation in CSF flow. This is a very poorly understood area but there ARE existing human studies that have shown when flow is analyzed by a special type of MRI in humans whose decompression surgery has not worked well, the discovery is often that the flow is unusual and a fresh surgery that facilitates the kind of flow an individual has, greatly improves pain. I can count on maybe two hands, the dogs I know of with 'mild' CM and no SM that are seriously symptomatic. The vast majority fall into the 'norm' of syrinxes causing problems and as a couple of studies show: width and shape of syrinx are closely correlated to level of pain/severity of symptoms. That doesn't mean there are not rare exceptions. Odd exceptions to the 'typical' presentation occur with ANY disease, *because we are all individuals*.

Also, many cavaliers have PSOM to some degree as well, and symptoms can be very painful and correlate to some being described. Many of these dogs also have enlarged ventricles, which are believed to have some not yet understood role in CM/SM and possibly could initiate pain. And bottom line: I have seen so much totally inaccurate information about individual cases of dogs, including deliberately distorted information, passed around by some (the same old...) breeders to suit their own ends that anyone should be very cautious about claims of what this dog or that dog they've heard about has or doesn't have. I have spoken to some of those US/UK neurologists and some of the actual dog owners and often the information being spread around is simply, wrong.

This claim of breeders being able to breed symptomatic dogs under the breeding protocol is an old canard. It is simply untrue, and such an interpretation raises questions about the intelligence of people claiming this -- surely breeders are not so incredibly stupid and ethically bankrupt that they would ever, knowingly, breed from a dog in pain for ANY reason (diagnosed or undiagnosed)?

AT
4th March 2012, 07:43 PM
I find it interesting that a study of 500+ asymptomatic cavaliers can be dismissed as a mere drop in the ocean in one sentence but in the next her personal experience, based on a very small number of mostly unscanned dogs, are used to argue against a carefully thought out BVA/KC Scheme.

I thought the same when I saw this being circulated yesterday, you cannot knock a scientific study for being too small then use your anecdotal experience of even less dogs to try and disprove it.
and experience of your possibly related dogs does not represent the breed as a whole.


I used to say i'd never seen SM either & it couldnt be that widespread. Then fate kicked me in the face and I realised my dog with the "skin condition " was severely affected. We have had 6 king charles who airscratched & one who has it on mri but no symptoms yet ( out of 22 dogs owned) & our previous cavalier penny certainly had something wrong as she screamed randomly and rubbed her back end on the wall until she bled. our current cavalier ezme scratches if you stroke her shoulder.

I'd love it if everyone who says it is not a problem arranged to have their dogs scanned, the results analized and published and proved us wrong ( who wants SM to be widespread , I dont ) but instead they try to knock those who are doing something & try to discourage others from scanning to make themselves feel better

anniemac
4th March 2012, 11:35 PM
There are some people that have cavaliers that show extreme symptoms with mild CM and I DON'T think they are trying to undermine any scheme or anything else but just want to help their dogs. The only time I saw it mentioned that they be used for breeding was here and from a comment that Rod made that he would have to see what researchers say. Karlin quickly addressed it and said that they would not want them used. You know I now have a cavalier that is showing symptoms and it is hard when people don't believe you. I know I came on here saying his MRI was without CM or SM but that diagnosis changed. I am waiting for my sister to mail the CD so I can see the images again. A really good friend told me to try and journal symptoms, frequency, duration, etc. so I am.

I could not help to go to a cavalier meet up today and someone told me they are worried about their cavalier air scratching. There is another cavalier that I think (and another person on here who is in meet up group) both thought was symptomatic. Two of us had MRI with severe SM and now Elton with mild CM both had surgery out of a group of maybe 8 tops. Now another one is having concerns. I was reading one post about importing but its a problem in all countries. I just wanted to say there are people who do care and have symptomatic mild CM cavaliers, myself included.

RodRussell
5th March 2012, 03:20 AM
... I find it interesting that a study of 500+ asymptomatic cavaliers can be dismissed as a mere drop in the ocean in one sentence but in the next her personal experience, based on a very small number of mostly unscanned dogs, are used to argue against a carefully thought out BVA/KC Scheme.

Aside from the obvious irony that one breeder's experiences should make her a skeptic, versus the MRI scans of 550 asymptomatic cavaliers, I still see a problem with that 550 figure. It includes a wide range of ages, from 12 months (and possibly younger) to over six years, and from that number, the researchers have found that 25% of the 12 month olds had CM/SM and that 70% of the six year olds and older had CM/SM. We don't know how many of the 550 fall into each age group.

Perhaps among the 550 dogs, there were a sufficient number in each age group to make their percentages statistically significant.

But if data like that, with unanswered questions, are enough to make breeders skeptical, then I think there should be a symposium to hash the questions out, and I don't think that just having clubs' health representatives report back to their clubs, and gather responses back from their clubs, is enough.

When the MVD breeding protocol was introduced, in 1996 to the UK breeders and in 1998 to the US breeders, the breeders were welcome to meet the panel of cardiologists and geneticist who devised the protocol, and ask their own questions to the panel members. The transcripts of these symposia were widely distributed. The result was that these kinds of skeptical comments were stifled from the start. Admitedly, it did not result in many breeders actually following the MVD protocol, but it did stifle the complaint that they did not get the chance to hear directly from the researchers and to get their questions asked. Instead, the breeders came up with other excuses.

Karlin
5th March 2012, 06:36 AM
Just on the assertion in the argument about dogs with mild CM having significant pain -- again, I would strongly question the interpretations of the scans and whether such dogs have 'mild' CM. In a paper using this same general cohort of dogs as the 70% paper (a bit larger as some were eliminated for some reasons in the 70% paper), Clare noted:

Of a group of 564 scanned cavaliers reported by Clare Rusbridge in a 24 month period there were NO dogs without CM and only SIX (1.1%) with mild CM.


This is why it seems extraordinary that a handful of primarily US neurologists are finding many cases of mild CM and even some CM-free dogs. True 'mild' CM is actually extremely rare. I would guess the majority of the US-graded 'mild CM' dogs actually are not 'mild'.

http://www.veterinary-neurologist.co.uk/resources/b-g-paper.pdf

Rod, I have a copy of the 70% paper and seem to recall that it does give the proportions for each age group in the full paper, but I haven't looked at it in a while. Unfortunately I don't have it with me on my laptop; it is back in Ireland on my desktop (I am in the US at the moment). Clare does note in the paper above that almost half of the scanned breeding dogs were under 2.5 though (in itself that seems fairly alarming -- presumably breeders who are already complaining of cost and the need for repeat scannings, are in many cases ONLY scanning their dogs at a point where they have no grade applicable to breeding and at an age they are most likely to be free of SM :( -- of the proportion without SM (about 75% in that age group) she notes some number will likely go on to develop SM.

Hopefully any thinking person will go read the paper linked to above as it totally undermines the ridiculous claims (based on -- FIVE dogs! As opposed to 555! :rolleyes:). It gives LOTS and LOTS of statistics on SM affectedness in that 550+ group and how many offspring end up affected depending on grades and whether one or both parents has SM.

A symposium on SM would be really interesting and helpful at the moment for all sorts of reasons, but I do not think it will change many views within the skeptics -- because the same crowd that attended the other two symposia and asked questions still stick to their same old arguments years later (typically based on the most convoluted twisting around of information, wishful thinking, and anecdotal information about tiny groups of dogs, compared to these huge research samples).

KingCav
5th March 2012, 11:47 AM
This is why it seems extraordinary that a handful of primarily US neurologists are finding many cases of mild CM and even some CM-free dogs. True 'mild' CM is actually extremely rare. I would guess the majority of the US-graded 'mild CM' dogs actually are not 'mild'.


I am sorry but I think this is insulting to neurologists here in the USA. Are you suggesting that Dr. Rusbridge is the only person who is fully qualified to interpret MRI scans?

RodRussell
5th March 2012, 05:36 PM
... Rod, I have a copy of the 70% paper and seem to recall that it does give the proportions for each age group in the full paper, but I haven't looked at it in a while. ...

I read the article, and I just re-read it, and if a breakdown by age group is in it, I'm not finding it.

RodRussell
5th March 2012, 05:37 PM
I am sorry but I think this is insulting to neurologists here in the USA. Are you suggesting that Dr. Rusbridge is the only person who is fully qualified to interpret MRI scans?

Oh, man, here we go again. Certainly, Karlin can respond, but looking for an argument does not become you.

KingCav
5th March 2012, 07:31 PM
Oh, man, here we go again. Certainly, Karlin can respond, but looking for an argument does not become you.

I am not looking for an argument Sir. I am defending the reputation of neuros in the USA.

Soushiruiuma
5th March 2012, 07:35 PM
I am sorry but I think this is insulting to neurologists here in the USA. Are you suggesting that Dr. Rusbridge is the only person who is fully qualified to interpret MRI scans?

It could be taken as insulting, but it's probably true as well. Very few neurologists in the US would have extensive experience grading CM in cavaliers; most of these specialists would also be happy to allow input from more experienced colleagues.

I suspect the quality difference is actually in the positioning of the head during the scan, rather than neurologist competency.

KingCav
5th March 2012, 08:39 PM
It could be taken as insulting, but it's probably true as well. Very few neurologists in the US would have extensive experience grading CM in cavaliers; most of these specialists would also be happy to allow input from more experienced colleagues.

I suspect the quality difference is actually in the positioning of the head during the scan, rather than neurologist competency.

Thank you for your explanation. I don't understand why they don't all use the same protocol. At least there would be some consistency in results.

RodRussell
5th March 2012, 08:45 PM
I am not looking for an argument Sir. I am defending the reputation of neuros in the USA.

They don't need your defense.

Karlin
5th March 2012, 08:46 PM
It could be taken as insulting, but it's probably true as well. Very few neurologists in the US would have extensive experience grading CM in cavaliers; most of these specialists would also be happy to allow input from more experienced colleagues.

I suspect the quality difference is actually in the positioning of the head during the scan, rather than neurologist competency.

I agree with the above. It really is NOT an issue of competency but lack of knowledge in this particular area. There has been a lot of work to try to standardise readings, and Clare Rusbridge has info up on her website on diagnosing syrinxes and CM. It would help if some of the US neurologists were in closer contact with the principle researchers on this condition. The ones in the US who are giving lots of 'mild CM' and some 'clear of CM' analyses have not been to any of the SM professional events in the UK at which much of this was discussed (I know this because I was there and knew the neurologists present) and, because the US clubs are doing so darn little, there's no discussion between colleagues on standard interpretation as there is in the Uk with the new BVA/KC scheme. This HAS a distinct way to grade CM. As Clare notes in the article I quoted, of 564 MRIs only SIX fit the grade of 1 for "mild CM". Not a single dog was a clear. Almost all of those dogs are breeder dogs, and will be immediately or closely related to all cavaliers in the US. There's just no way there are pockets of mild CM and clear CM dogs in the US when they are so closely connected to all the dogs getting non 'mild' grades.

So neurologists should not be insulted but driven to becoming more informed on the terminology of what is now the STANDARD analysis of CM in the UK, geared specifically for breeders.

To not do so, is totally misleading to many pet and especially breeder owners of cavaliers in the US who are assuming their dogs have a particular grade and may use this for breeding decisions (and in some cases, are telling people they have lots of clear dogs, which is almost guaranteed NOT to be the case and extremely misleading to buyers).


To repeat: there is a STANDARD for grading CM that was drawn up by a panel of neurologists and researchers in consultation with the Kennel Club and which is the centrepiece of the whole grading programme designed to help breeders make the best possible and most informed breeding decisions.

There is NO reason for ANY international neurologist not to be using a standardised analysis and to stop informally using terms like "mild". Until they are using a standard, then terms like "mild" are relatively meaningless if coming from US professionals because their mild is in many cases obviously not the "mild" used for the professional grading scheme and used in published papers.

The reality is that research and definitions in this condition have been almost entirely UK driven, and most published work has come from the UK (with some notable exceptions). What a difference it would make if the US clubs/AKC actually showed some constructive concern about this condition and the needs of breeders, and worked to connect into the existing scheme, and funded US researchers more broadly. There are pockets of research work but absolutely nothing like the BVA/KC scheme and no club or AKC drive to have anything like it. :(

Pat
5th March 2012, 09:00 PM
Very few neurologists in the US would have extensive experience grading CM in cavaliers; most of these specialists would also be happy to allow input from more experienced colleagues.

I agree with this statement, and this was my experience when I had the MRI done for my then 8 year old boy through Rupert's Fund. I had the MRI done at the University of Georgia with Dr. Simon Platt. He has a good deal of experience as UGA was doing the study for Brussels Griffon, and his interpretation was closely in line with the report I got from Dr. Rusbridge who looked at the CD that I sent to her. But Dr. Rusbridge gave a lot more details on more subtle features of the MRI, and Dr. Platt acknowledged that she is the expert in this area.

Pat

anniemac
5th March 2012, 09:18 PM
I love, love, love Ella and now Elton's neurologist but when he said Elton had "NO CM", I said, "Let me see if Dr. Rusbridge would find this valuable for research even though I don't have his pedigree." I knew there were few that truly had "NO CM". He told me he wanted a radiologist (who Karlin has mentioned knew even less about diagnosing CM I think) and came back saying he does have "mild CM". Since Elton is not going to be used for breeding does it really matter? I would like to know what is causing him to act the way he does (Fly Catchers, etc.) but if medicine helps then so be it.

RodRussell
6th March 2012, 10:22 PM
BVA president Carl Padgett gave a speech today at the BVA's annual dinner in London. He stated:


"Last week the BBC screened a follow up to the hard-hitting 2008 documentary Pedigree Dogs Exposed. The programme revealed that much has happened in the last 3-4 years but that there is still a lot more to do to improve the health and welfare of man’s best friend.

"One of the starkest images of the original programme was the Cavalier King Charles spaniel writhing in agony with a condition known as Syringomyelia, where the head is essentially too small for the brain.

"This year the BVA and Kennel Club have launched a screening scheme for this painful condition and later this week we will be educating breeders and potential puppy owners on the benefits of the new scheme at Crufts."

So, it looks like the roll-out will be a Crufts. Text of his full speech is here:
http://www.vetsforum.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/London-dinner-speech-2012-CAD-on-headed.pdf

Kate H
7th March 2012, 10:34 AM
There's a health area at Crufts, where people from the Animal Health Trust, Royal Vet College etc are available to give information and answer questions - I would guess they'll make a big thing of the new scheme there. as well as on the KC's own information stand. Incidentally, anyone buying a catalogue or show guide is also going to get a free video of the KC's two new films - one on health and one on puppy farming. With the numbers of general public who go to Crufts (it'll be heaving on Saturday, when we're going!), this may at least do some awareness raising.

Kate, Oliver and Aled