I don't agree with breeding from very young dogs ...
However,one big advantage of scanning dogs from a year old is to get data onto the EBV database and quickly.
If approx 25% of affected cavaliers are so at a year old,these early onset dogs can be eliminated from breeding programmes and the data sent for the EBV database.
So I think there are some very positive aspects to this.
It will of course also allow stud dogs to be scanned young and put to work...but even at the moment, the current guidelines are no deterrent.
I have no objection to scanning at any age. I'm not talking about scanning. I'm talking about breeding dogs as young as 12 months old. This set of guidelines will give the cretin breeders one more excuse.
Originally Posted by sins
Cretin breeders don't need any excuse. They are still breeding 14 month old puppies ( and the breed into extinction ) because they are not going to let anyone tell them what to do.
Originally Posted by RodRussell
These guidelines do not invite breeders to use young dogs or encourage them to ignore the MVD guidelines. they give breeders the information on what grade of cavalier to mate together to lessen the chance of the puppies developing early onset SM.
The SM guidelines show that a cavalier scanned within the age 1-3 should always be mated to a cavalier scanned over the age of three.
It is unrealistic to think that it is the duty of any one specialist to ignore the findings of their own research to accommodate the requirements of another health protocol.
A responsible breeder will need to juggle the SM guidelines, the MVD protocols, the advice on mating DD/CC & EFS carriers put out by the AHT and take into account the findings from the BVA/KC eye test.
As soon as the Kennel Club actually launches the BVA/KC CMSM Scheme that these guidelines are designed for, then I will need to sit down and revise my cavalierpuppy website.
I will still be saying that the parents of puppies should be at least 2.5 years before they are bred because that is what the MVD protocol demands, so nothing has changed there.
I will need to work out how best to describe the SM guidelines, but the one thing I will be pointing out is that for SM the older the parents are scanned the better, and that in every case at least one parent should be older than three years when scanned.
I will emphasis that cavaliers scanned over the age of five years have been shown to be the least risky parents when it comes to choosing a puppy.
Sadly, I find it all very depressing - not because people aren't doing their best by giving us these guidelines but because it seems to be getting less and less possible to find breeding stock that fulfils all these requirements. As a friend who is a small breeder of very healthy dogs said to me: Your dog has got to scan clear - preferably grandparents as well; you then have to find a dog or bitch for mating who has also scanned within the acceptable range. Both of them also need to be clear of MVD for at least two generations. You do the DNA tests for curly coat, dry eye and episodic falling; if your dog or bitch is a carrier of any of them, the dog or bitch they are to be mated to has to be tested clear. How many dogs are out there who fulfil all these criteria? The people who are going to carry on breeding are the ones who ignore guidelines, don't scan or test, and refuse to believe that their dogs have any problems - or know they have and carry on regardless. And that's not going to be very good for Cavaliers.
Even regular scanning is just the best we can do at the moment. I got Oliver when he was a year old; his breeder was very keen to use him at stud when he was two. I refused for practical reasons. Four years later he was diagnosed with SM, though he had symptoms of at least CM from much earlier. At two, he could well have scanned clear of SM, because four years later his syrinx was very small and might have only developed recently. If he had been mated, he could have fathered say 6 puppies, some of whom (all of whom, if the mother had also at that stage scanned clear for SM) would have either developed SM or passed the gene on to their own offspring. Because CM/SM is a progressive disease, scanning and breeding guidelines are only the best we can do at the moment - but we have to do something. Hopefully it won't be too long before we get a DNA test - we so need it.
Kate, Olivr and Aled
It is depressing Kate, especially since most breeders are ignoring all guidelines, so looking at SM alone there will be more early affected SM cavaliers than unaffected produced from each litter bred by owners that do not bother to scan.
Breeders that use young parents, one or two unscanned parents, parents that are graded C or D are overall going to produce more than 50% affected puppies from each of those matings. They are adding to the problem with each litter they produce.
Seven years ago I was saying that if we did not do something to try and breed away from the problem, when we did get the DNA test we would find that there were no genetically clear cavaliers left.
I believe that we reached that point a while ago.
No I am depressed but not for the irresponsible breeders but for the ones that are trying to do the right thing. what do geneticists say?
Maybe breeders will scan at one to get an idea for breeding program and scan again later before they breed, but even with or without it, they would not breed at an early age. Others will just see the 1 year and thats enough. Oh well.
I edited this because I feel differently.
You know things were done in the past. We are still learning things about CM and SM. MVD, on the other hand, is a different story. What I would like to see is the breed clubs getting with Dr. Bell and consult with him or other geneticists and look at how to go forward with factoring all health.
There is no "perfect" dog and the more we know about the health, the better to make decision.
The consequence is not that the breeders need another excuse, it is that they will use it to convince otherwise ignorant buyers that such glaringly underaged breedings are okay, indeed "recommended by specialists."
Originally Posted by Margaret C
To the contrary, I consider it irresponsible to ignore the MVD protocol. All they had to do was change the "1-3" year category to "<3", or add a note that the "1-3" category was limited to no less than 2.5 years for cavaliers.
Originally Posted by Margaret C
What I meant about scanning at 1 is, I believe there are breeders that scan at one to get an idea and then scan again before breeding, but the majority would only care about one scan.
Deleted... Let's hope for a better future.