Inherited Diseases And Breeding Strategies In The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Dr Tom Lewis
Cavalier breeders are confronted with many health issues when making their breeding decisions. Diseases such as mitral valve disease, syringomyelia and dry eye & curly coat syndrome can be both costly and distressing, and the responsible breeder will take steps to reduce the risk as far as possible of breeding affected dogs. Furthermore the future viability of the breed should be of concern, as with all breeds. However, the paucity of universally available information makes effective decision making in these areas very difficult. The results of genetic analysis can provide a range of tools that facilitate the consideration of health in breeding strategies; from DNA tests for single gene disease to estimated breeding values (EBVs) for complex disease and measures of relationship useful in stemming the erosion of genetic diversity. The Kennel Club’s MATE SELECT website will aim to take advantage of developments in genetic research into canine health to provide breeders with more and better information to assist in their efforts to breed healthy dogs. This presentation will summarise some of the developments in canine genetics with reference to the Cavalier and explain how they will be presented in MATE SELECT.
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