Blog Archives for the year 2016

Paw Print Genetics Launches Clear by Parentage Certificate Program

Paw Print Genetics Launches Clear by Parentage Certificate Program

Paw Print Genetics customers can now receive Clear by Parentage certificates for their puppies. Responsible breeders work hard to ensure that their dogs are clear of inherited diseases found in their breed. Breeders also want the ability to show potential buyers that the puppy they are about to purchase is also clear of disease, but testing an entire litter can be expensive.

Our new Clear by Parentage certificate program provides breeders with an alternative to testing their entire litter. Breeders can now clear their puppies for the diseases already found clear in the dam and sire. This program is for those breeders that used Paw Print Genetics for their disease testing. 

Follow these easy steps to get your certificates.

  1. Order and complete disease testing on prospective parents through Paw Print Genetics.
  2. Once pups are born, do parentage testing through Paw Print Genetics using the parents and any pup for which you want a certificate.
  3. When the parentage has been completed proving the parents, order Clear by Parentage certificates for those tests that are clear in both parents.

In some cases, one or both of the parents are carriers of a genetic mutation.  Breeders can order testing on one or more pups ...

To Anyone Dedicated to Breeding Better Dogs, an open letter by Cheryl Hass

To Anyone Dedicated to Breeding Better Dogs, an open letter by Cheryl Hass

Brief personal history as credentials . . .

In the world of dog breeding, I started long before any genetic testing was readily available, with Chesapeakes, more than 25 years ago now. We performed OFA Hips and that was about it. Then I went back to my herding dog roots with Australian Shepherds, Miniature Australian Shepherds and now Miniature American Shepherds. What I have to say about genetic testing however, applies regardless of breed.

Some of you that have been in this for a while, may remember a company that offered a slew of testing, all in one package, for $25. It was the hottest item on the market. I remember feeling very virtuous about being able to test all my dogs, for a reasonable price, for a whole bunch of things that I didn't understand at the time. But as breeders we educated ourselves, found out that testing really DOES matter and learned how to breed away from some of the unfortunate genetics that our dogs carried. It really was an exciting time in breeding because it gave us such powerful, valuable information that increased the overall health of the dogs we produced. The problem was that this company was not all ...

What You Need to Know Before Breeding or Training Your Border Collie

What You Need to Know Before Breeding or Training Your Border Collie

Paw Print Genetics is a proud sponsor of the US Border Collie Handlers Association. With their Sheepdog Finals next month, it is a good time to think about genetic issues and whether to breed your dog.

Although generally considered a relatively healthy breed, like other purebred dogs, the border collie is at risk to inherit several genetic diseases. Testing your dog prior to breeding prevents the disease through avoidance of producing puppies at-risk. This brief article describes a few of the diseases that can currently be tested for in border collies.  Click here to find a complete list of tests for border collies.

Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA) can vary from mild to severe; mild cases have normal vision, while severely affected dogs can have retinal detachments, malformation of the eye, and blindness. Unfortunately it is not possible to predict the severity of clinical signs based upon the severity of an affected parent. About 2% of border collies tested at Paw Print Genetics are affected with this disorder.

Trapped Neutrophil Syndrome (TNS) is a disease of the immune system that prevents affected dogs from producing an adequate amount of neutrophils (a type of white blood cell).  Affected dogs commonly present at ...

Genetic Testing of the Symptomatic Dog

Genetic Testing of the Symptomatic Dog

It does not come as a surprise to veterinarians that many of the diseases they see in clinical practice have a hereditary component. If a genetic disease is amenable to treatment, veterinarians are typically well equipped to improve quality of life based upon their patient’s clinical signs. However, since clinical signs alone don’t always point to a specific definitive diagnosis, veterinarians treating inherited disease are often left with unanswered questions about the root cause of the medical problem. Paw Print Genetics offers genetic testing for over 140 different genetic diseases to help veterinarians shorten their list of differential diagnoses and identify the specific genetic mutation responsible for causing the clinical signs they are seeing, thereby, allowing for more specific therapies and recommendations to be made for the benefit of their patients.

Breed Specific Genetic Testing

Many inherited conditions seen in dogs are breed specific or have only been described in particular breeds or breed groups. For instance, one specific mutation in the canine HSF4 gene responsible for early-onset hereditary cataracts has only been described in the Australian shepherd and closely related breeds. Searching a specific breed or symptom on the Paw Print Genetics website will simplify the process of choosing ...

Prevention Is Smart Breeding- PFK Deficiency in the English Springer Spaniel

Prevention Is Smart Breeding- PFK Deficiency in the English Springer Spaniel

Likely originating in Spain, the spaniel family of dogs have long been important companions to bird hunters around the world. As late as the 1880’s, springer and cocker spaniels were born in the same litters and were only differentiated by size after birth. Dogs under 28 pounds were considered “cockers” and were used for their ability to hunt the small wading bird known as the woodcock while the larger “springers” were used to flush game birds to be captured by trained birds of prey (which were later replaced by firearms). Separate breed status for cocker and springer spaniels was established in 1902 by the Kennel Club of England and the English springer spaniel (ESS) was formally recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1910. Since that time, the ESS has been further differentiated into the leaner and less densely haired “field” variety and the heavier boned and thicker coated show or “bench” lines.

Like other breeds, along the historical path to the modern ESS, the breed has developed some inherited disease concerns that keep breeders on their toes. Luckily, some of these inherited diseases can be eliminated from blood lines though the use of genetic testing technologies and selective breeding ...

Degenerative Myelopathy- An Owner’s Perspective

Degenerative Myelopathy- An Owner’s Perspective

One of the happiest days of my life was bringing home a German shepherd puppy to join our family. Like many parents, my wife and I wanted our only son Brandon, who was 5 or 6 years old at the time, to grow up around dogs and help us teach him some responsibility. We visited a family with a litter of 7 week old puppies to let Brandon pick the one that was going to be his buddy while he grew up. Brandon decided on the quietest pup in the litter to become our new dog, Griffey. Our journey with Griffey (Griff for short) began with Brandon and his new companion in the back of our convertible in route to the home we were excited to share with our new family member. My wife and I were hopeful that Griff would give Brandon a best friend for 10 to 13 years. Unfortunately, that wasn’t exactly how things worked out.

Signs of Trouble

We spent many years loving Griff and giving him the best years of his life. Brandon and Griff were inseparable as they aged. They played together, they napped together, and they got into trouble together. At about 8 ...

Prevention is Smart Breeding- Cystine Bladder Stones in the Newfoundland Dog

Prevention is Smart Breeding- Cystine Bladder Stones in the Newfoundland Dog
'Scout' courtesy of Brad Geddes via Flickr, Creative Commons license

From its early history as a North American working dog used to retrieve fishing nets and perform human water rescues, the beautiful and intelligent Newfoundland dog has carved out a well-deserved place in the heart of dog lovers around the world. Their characteristic large size, marked by heavy bones, powerful musculature, webbed feet, and thick hair coat make the Newfoundland particularly adept at tasks involving swimming. However, they are just as capable and content pulling carts on land and performing other land-based tasks. In addition, their generally calm, loyal, and affable temperament have helped establish them as great family dogs.  

Over the years, Newfoundland breeders have selectively bred dogs that have displayed the most desirable characteristics in an effort to improve their breed. Unfortunately, alongside these desirable traits, sometimes the predisposition to produce offspring with certain inherited diseases are also silently passed from generation to generation in the form of genetic mutations. Such a genetic mutation found in the canine SLC3A1 gene (first described in 2000) is responsible for a potentially life-threatening condition in the Newfoundland known as cystinuria. Luckily for Newfoundlands and those that love them, cystinuria can be eliminated from most blood lines through the incorporation of ...

Integrating Genetic Testing Into Veterinary Practice- Mixed Breed or Pure Bred Pet Dogs

Integrating Genetic Testing Into Veterinary Practice- Mixed Breed or Pure Bred Pet Dogs

For many years, an extensive physical exam, fecal sample testing, vaccinations, and deworming have been the mainstays of new puppy veterinary visits. While all of these tried and true steps are crucial in making sure that a puppy is healthy and stays that way, advances in genetic testing technologies are now revolutionizing the veterinarian’s approach to addressing and anticipating potential health issues in young dogs. Though inherited diseases are seen by veterinarians on a frequent basis, many veterinarians do not realize that genetic testing for diseases is available or understand how clinically helpful testing puppies at their first visit can be. How often do you discuss puppy genetic testing with your clients?

How Can Genetic Testing Improve Veterinary Practice?

The implications that genetic testing results can have for a dog’s veterinary care vary by a specific disease’s age of onset, progression, and clinical signs. Early diagnosis of late-onset inherited diseases allows for your clients to become educated about what to expect and in some cases, take preventative measures and plan for life changes. Knowledge that a dog is at-risk for a particular late-onset disease also allows for early diagnosis and implementation of early treatment when possible. In some cases, clients ...

A Letter from our CEO

A Letter from our CEO

Since the announcement that we ended our litigation over the gene patents for  progressive retinal atrophy (prcd), collie eye anomaly, congenital stationary night blindness in Briards, and retinal dysplasia/oculoskeletal dysplasia in Labradors, there has been a huge outpouring of encouragement and congratulations from our customers. At Paw Print Genetics, we are all very touched by this support.

I have also received a number of emails from customers worried that we may raise our prices because of this new sublicense. I have even seen this question debated on Facebook and understand the concern.  As you can imagine, the lawsuits from the past couple of years were expensive. We paid hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees to support our cases.  Last year, we won our case in Federal court and the patent for exercise-induced collapse (EIC) was invalidated. This allowed our customers to register their EIC results with the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA), but also cleared the way for other laboratories to offer this test without fear of litigation, even though they did not participate in the lawsuits or help fund our cause. As we are recovering from these huge litigation costs, we are doing all ...

How to Order Genetic Testing on an Upcoming Litter of Puppies

How to Order Genetic Testing on an Upcoming Litter of Puppies

The most common question that I receive goes something like this…”I have an upcoming litter.  How do I take advantage of this great sale before the pups have names and registration numbers?”

Paw Print Genetics provides a lot of services ‘behind the scenes’ that you may not know about.  Here we review our most popular services – all at no extra charge to you!

You can order tests for your pups before they are born!  Place an order with Paw Print Genetics anticipating the number of pups you are expecting. Name each pup a separate name, such as pup1, pup2, etc. Once they are born, you can update each pup with their birth date and sex. You can edit their name and add a collar color or some other identifier like coat color. Now you are ready to send in your samples!

Review all of our samples types because some samples, like dewclaws and umbilical cords will get you results much sooner than waiting on the best time to do cheek swabs in a puppy.

If you over estimated your litter size or just wanted to order extra tests to take advantage of the savings, you ...