breeding for healthy hearts: background to heart protocol
Just came across this interesting history on another list and thought board members might like to know more too.
Many may not realise that the CKCS club breeding protocol on MVD, now widely recommended across all the worldwide CKCS breed clubs (and in some cases, like Sweden, an actual requirement for breeding) was only brought in in 1998. This was at the CKCS USA club's symposium on MVD, which considered the results of studies by researchers on thousands of cavaliers. Out of that came the recommendation many will be familiar with: to only breed dogs when they reach age 2.5 minimum, and have been certified heart clear AND if their parents were heart clear at age 5. Otherwise, it is advised not to breed any cavalier of unknown heart history until age 5, and only if it is murmur-free (certified by a cardiologist, not a vet, as vets are known to be poor at picking up murmurs until they are fairly serious. See: http://www.cavaliertalk.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=64 ).
I just learned there is an abridged transcript of the proceedings here: http://www.ckcsc.org/ckcsc/formsdocs...heartsymp.PDF/
It's an important piece of cavalier history and also might help people better understand the issue of MVD (mitral valve disease) in the breed