West of England Cavalier Club
Click to Read update May 2009 from Dr Imelda McGonnell

Click to Read update 22 Nov 2008

19th January 2010 - Dr McGonnell is pleased to say that the Ph.D student (a qualified vet with research experience in both London and Liverpool) will be joining the team on the 1st March 2010. The FTR project has also received generous donations from the Cavalier Club, the West of England Cavalier Club, and the ACKCS Charitable Trust, together with a number of private donations. Fund raising is ongoing.
We all know how devastating the death of a puppy can be, or the arrival of a still born pup, and what a waste we feel it to be. However, Dr Imelda McGonnell of the Royal Veterinary College is researching in to cranial and skull development, and feels that information derived from the following material:
  1. Aborted material
  2. Stillborn material
  3. Death within up to a week of whelping
will provide insight in to a number of conditions, including both canine and human SM and possible genetic links. Dr McGonnell would welcome the participation of breeders in to this research, and you are asked in the first instance to get in touch with TBA who will be happy to provide you with information and instructions. All details are completely confidential, and breeders will eventually receive a report from Dr McGonnell on any specimen provided.

It’s perhaps worth mentioning that since the research started the team has obtained funding for a Ph.D student – and that we have an expert on epilepsy on board. We have also received requests from cardiologists for mitral valve tissue to help research on hearts. So please do get in touch – it will be a great help to the breed.


All of us who have had a cherished dog put to sleep recognise a great many things. Not the least of which is how difficult it can be – and yet how we start to know that the time is coming near.

The FTR team have learned a great deal from the neonatal tissue that breeders have provided to them and would now like to be able to compare those findings in older dogs. They are asking that breeders and owners, if they feel able, make a promise to donate their older dogs after death.

As in life, so in death – each dog and owner is individual, and the relationship special. Cavaliers are special. The FTR team recognise that fact, and arrangements will be tailored to suit that relationship. Your dog will go on to help other dogs and – again as in life – will also help humans.

The promise can be made at any time, and you are asked in the first instance to contact TBA who will liaise with you and the team when you find you are able to fulfil it.
Thank you.
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