The Paw Print Genetics Blog

Happy Holidays 2022!

Happy Holidays 2022!

As we close the year and celebrate with family and friends, I want to say thank you to all our clients, supporters, and Friends of Paw Print Genetics. 2022 has been filled with change. At the end of 2021, the company was acquired by Neogen®, a world leader in Food and Animal Safety. Change has allowed us to expand our service offerings, try new technologies to support our high-quality services, and become part of a larger team of professionals all working to improve the health of animals. Paw Print Genetics' brand may look different, but our commitment is still the same, “…dedicated to achieving optimal canine/feline genetic health by providing outstanding resources for dog owners, breeders, trainers, and veterinarians for pets, show dogs and working dogs.”

Thank you for partnering with us and trusting us. May you have a wonderful holiday season and a prosperous new year!

Holiday Pet Safety

Holiday Pet Safety

‘Tis the season of holiday festivities. Delicious food, and festive decorations, and holiday parties – oh my! While these activities are exciting and fun, they can pose potential dangers to your pets. The holidays are expensive enough as it is, don’t let an emergency trip to the vet make an even larger dent in your wallet! By educating yourself on the following, you can avoid a jingle bell flop.

Food Safety:

Whether you are cooking or eating holiday meals, it can sometimes be tempting to share some with those big puppy dog eyes looking up to you. However, you should avoid feeding your pets scraps as many holiday foods can cause more harm than good. In addition, be careful where you place your food in case you have any counter-surfing pets who will grab food from the table when you’re not looking.

  • If your pet eats a large amount of fatty meat, such as ham, it can potentially cause side effects such as vomiting and diarrhea due to the high salt and sodium content within the meat.
  • Chocolate and other desserts are a holiday staple. However, chocolate in particular is very harmful to pets because it contains caffeine and theobromine ...

New Tests Launched at Paw Print Genetics

New Tests Launched at Paw Print Genetics

At Neogen/Paw Print Genetics (PPG), we are always exploring the current research to produce new tests for disease-causing mutations.  Every month new discoveries are made and published in the veterinary scientific journals.  On September 28, 2022, we added a host of new tests for disease-causing mutations in many breeds to our menu as we strive to be a convenient source for your genetic testing requirements. Listed here are the 20 new tests PPG is now offering and some of the breeds affected by these mutations.  Some of these new tests are for mutations that are rare, even within the associated breeds of concern.

New tests for the basset hound

We are thrilled to now offer a test for Lafora Disease.  This test for the late onset neurologic condition has been much anticipated for the basset hound, miniature wirehaired dachshund, and other breeds at risk.  Because Lafora Disease presents later in a dog’s life, knowing the status for this mutation and breeding appropriately will lower the frequency of the mutation within a population and reduce the number of at-risk/affected dogs.  The NHLRC1 mutation is a complex test that requires high-quality DNA. Therefore a ...

New Tests Added to the Canine HealthCheck

New Tests Added to the Canine HealthCheck

The Canine HealthCheck has added six new tests  Customers who purchase a new Canine HealthCheck or have yet to use their Comprehensive Canine HealthCheck purchased from our website will automatically receive these six new tests for their dog when samples are received after August 9th, 2022.  However, for dogs that have already been tested or for samples that are currently being processed by our laboratory, we are unable to add these new tests to your dog’s testing. Luckily, all of these tests except one are also offered at Paw Print Genetics and we may be able to use the DNA sample that we have on file in the laboratory to do this testing for you if desired. If your dog was previously tested with the Canine HealthCheck and you now want one or more of these new tests, please give us a call at 855-202-4889 (US and Canada only), 509-483-5950 or reach out to us via email at PPGAskUs@neogen.com and we will help you place a new order.  

The six new tests include Golden Retriever Ichthyosis Type 2, Norwegian Buhund Ataxia, Cerebellar Ataxia of Belgian Shepherds, Spanish Water Dog Progressive Retinal Atrophy and two new traits for ...

The Veterinarian's Corner- Beyond von Willebrand Disease: Genetic Testing for Other Canine Platelet Disorders

The Veterinarian's Corner- Beyond von Willebrand Disease: Genetic Testing for Other Canine Platelet Disorders

Von Willebrand disease (vWD) is arguably the most well recognized canine blood clotting disorder. A common genetic mutation in the VWF gene (first described in the Doberman pinscher in 2001) has played a significant role in increasing the recognition of vWD as a cause of clotting problems in dogs1. Genetic testing for this mild to moderate platelet disorder, known as vWD type 1 (vWD1 or vWDI), has played an important role in assisting veterinarians in diagnosis and in assisting breeders in identification of non-symptomatic carriers of the mutation prior to breeding. Since that time, dozens of other breeds have also been found to be affected by the same mutation. Thus, solidifying vWD as a potential concern for many dog lovers. In addition, other genetic mutations in the VWF gene have also been associated with more severe forms of von Willebrand disease (type 2 and type 3) in some breeds.

Despite the important role of testing some breeds for the identified vWD1 mutation, it is also important to keep in mind that hemostasis is an incredibly complex process involving multiple physiologic steps and the interaction of many protein clotting factors, various cell types, and endogenous molecules. In some breeds, other ...

The Veterinarian’s Corner- New Canine Genetic Disease Tests to Aid in Clinical Diagnosis

The Veterinarian’s Corner- New Canine Genetic Disease Tests to Aid in Clinical Diagnosis

To usher in 2022, Paw Print Genetics (PPG) has added 12 new canine disease and trait tests to expand upon the largest selection of canine genetic tests in the industry. However, because diseases seen in veterinary practice are not seen with equal frequency, here I will highlight five of the new test offerings for diseases that are among the most likely to be encountered in veterinary practice. 

Ataxia (Norwegian Buhund Type)1- Norwegian Buhund

Ataxia (Norwegian buhund type), also known as cerebellar ataxia, is an early-onset autosomal recessive neurological disease affecting the Norwegian buhund. Dogs inheriting two copies of the associated KCNIP4 gene mutation present between three and five months of age with progressive neurological disease. Initial clinical signs are consistent with cerebellar ataxia, including wide-based stance, hypermetria, head tremors, and truncal sway. As the disease progresses, dogs are eventually unable to stand or walk without falling. Cerebellar degeneration is a common histopathological finding in affected dogs and dramatic reductions in cerebellar KCNIP4 protein have been described. The speed of disease progression is variable, but affected dogs are often euthanized due to quality-of-life concerns.

In one study, 19% out of 146 apparently healthy Norwegian buhunds tested carried one copy ...

Paw Print Genetics Develops 12 New Tests

Paw Print Genetics Develops 12 New Tests

One of the goals at Paw Print Genetics (PPG) is to add to our large menu of tests whenever we can. New genetic changes found in the dog genome for diseases and traits are published periodically in the medical literature. These publications guide us in developing new tests for our customers.

Among the new tests launched this month are three tests for traits. Two of the tests will identify whether a dog carries for polydactyly, which results in having hind dewclaws. One of the polydactyly variants in the LMBR1 gene will cause hind dewclaws in many different breeds, while the mutation in ALX4 only causes polydactyly in the Great Pyrenees. Both variants are dominant, meaning that one or two copies will result in polydactyly. Interestingly, the mutation for the Great Pyrenees causes double dewclaws, whereas the mutation in LMBR1 causes just single dewclaws.

The third trait launched is for another E locus variant. PPG offers several E locus variants, so it is important to read the description of each before choosing your test. Most breeds will produce a yellow or red coat color when there are two copies of the ‘e’ allele from the common E locus variant.  However ...

New Tests Added to Doodle Panels

New Tests Added to Doodle Panels

Paw Print Genetics has a history of supporting genetically healthy breeding no matter the breed. With the rising popularity of various doodles and other mixed breed dogs, we created panels for the diverse poos and doodles that contain the most common and important genetic tests from the founder breeds. These panels have become essential components for many breeders as they strive to produce the healthiest puppies possible.

From time to time, we review all our panels to ensure that they contain the most appropriate tests. Tests are selected for the Essential Panel (or just the Panel if there are only a few tests for a breed) based on (1) the frequency that we are identifying a specific mutation in the founder breeds, (2) the severity of the condition, with more severe conditions that should be avoided included in the Essential Panels and (3) the availability of treatments for the condition. Panels will vary among the doodles and poos based on the founding breeds, so it is important to select the panel that best fits your mixed breed dog.

We recently reviewed the panels for doodles, poos and other mixed breed dogs. You can search your breed by clicking here. You may ...

Direct vs Indirect Genetic Testing

Direct vs Indirect Genetic Testing

By Casey R. Carl, DVM and Blake Ballif, PhD

A topic in veterinary genetic testing currently getting significant attention is the difference between direct and indirect genetic testing for mutations associated with various diseases and traits. Although both types of testing can play a useful role in determining a dog’s genetic health status, the use of indirect genetic testing comes with some additional caveats that need to be considered when selecting the best testing strategy for a particular dog.

Direct Genetic Testing

As the name indicates, direct genetic testing is a general term for any genetic testing technique which looks for the presence of the specific genetic variant (mutation) known to play a causal role in a particular disease or trait. Therefore, regardless of which genotyping technique used, test results obtained from direct testing identify the presence or absence of the specific mutation that has been associated with the disease or trait. Barring differences in quality of laboratory practices and test development, direct testing is therefore the ideal method to detect a specific mutation. Furthermore, identifying the precise causative mutation in a DNA sample from a dog allows one to draw appropriate conclusions about the implications of this mutation in this ...

Tips on Sample Collection

Tips on Sample Collection
Cheek swab

Sample cheek swabs are the easiest and least invasive means of collecting cells containing genetic material from your dog. Although it is a simple process, it is important that you fully understand how to collect a sample using a cheek swab. Follow along with us as we walk you through the swabbing process using one of our sample kits.

Each kit includes a requisition form, a return mailer, a label, and a cheek swab with a biohazard bag. After reviewing the form that came with your kit, you’re ready to start the collection process. If swabbing a puppy, it is best not to take samples from a puppy that hasn’t been weaned because some of the mother’s DNA can be present due to nursing, which can contaminate the sample. Be sure to also wait for at least an hour after the dog eats or plays with shared toys before attempting to swab; excess saliva and food particles can compromise testing and reduce the quality of a sample.

When you are ready to begin swabbing, remove the swab from its protective packaging and be careful to not let anything touch the tip of the sponge. Insert the sponge between your dog's ...