Looks like another warm one today; this is the dogs day off. After much exercise over the weekend they typically take Monday to rest. Not me though; I am at the moment wedged in bed by the poodles but need to wriggle out and get to the gym. Exercise, exercise, we all hate it but love it at the sametime, eh? I would like to briefly discuss Canine Hip Dysplaysia today. In my breed it is something I have kept a close eye on.
Most large breeds are affected by the disease; CHD is a genetic disease that is passed onto offspring. There is still much research going on with this disease and much is unknown. One thing that I did find out recently is that racing greyhounds do not suffer at all from hip dysplasia; definitely something to look into. They are obviously doing something right if it has not crept into their breeding at all.
When one looks at the disease, where it comes from and how you can stop it; there are many factors. The first and most obvious is the OFA test This is when a dogs hips are xrayed and they are given a rating. Excellent - Severely dysplastic. In my opinion only excellent and good dogs should be bred but that is and only if they have good or excellent ratings in their pedigree. You cannot get rid of a disease by breeding borderline dogs.
What is in a dogs pedigree is even more important than the individual dog itself. An excellent rated dog can have a very poor rated background giving it a high rate of producing more bad hips. Environment and nutrition also play a role in CHD; but they cannot come into play if the genetics are not there. Meaning you cannot create Hip Dysplasia in good hips unless of course there has been a serious injury at some point.
Even with the best of research it can pop up; you do your research to find a good breeder and it can still happen. That is called life! The great breeders are doing their work; unfortunately there are alot of not good breeders out there undoing alot of the work out there. But by following strict guidelines, one a good breeder has made for themselves; they must be prepared to pass on a breeding. A good breeders main statement has always been "better the breed." This should be the guideline.
It is all about research, research, research. An excellent puppy pulled from a questionable pedigree will more than likely pass on the questionable.