Question for you breeders - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 01:16 PM Thread Starter
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Question for you breeders

With the increases in genetic diseases for the GSD, what do you all feel about the other genetic tests? Tests like DM, JRD, MCR1, etc? I personally know a pup who died at 9 months from JRD that came from a well known WGWL breeder. Even with the autopsy reports, they are turning a blind eye on this genetic issue and still breeding the same dogs.
Do you all believe that all breeding stock should be tested for all available genetic diseases?

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post #2 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 01:51 PM
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Do you all believe that all breeding stock should be tested for all available genetic diseases?
No. Realistically people only have so much money and can only do so much. While I DO believe as much as possible should be done to prevent genetic diseases, I find it far more important to test for what is most common in terms of issues.

With the DM test, I like to see it because it means the breeder is aware of the issue (that has become more prevalent in the last few years) and wants to do something about it....but as of right now, the test itself isn't considered highly reliable. Heart troubles are another that I have not seen as terribly common in the breed. Some people do test for issues, but unless you've been producing those issues, I would ask why you were testing. And even beyond that...WHEN did the issues arise? With what breeding, and what bloodlines?

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post #3 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 02:21 PM
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Xeph.....I agree with you.

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....where breeding is still considered an art....
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post #4 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 04:17 PM
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Me too, and would like to add there is nothing like a "free of everything" dog. And even if they exist you would narrow the gene pool to such extents than the breed would vanish.

You who have kids and/or are planning to have descendants... are you and your entirely family free of genetic diseases?

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post #5 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 05:55 PM
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I have nothing against these tests, but I don't think they are a substitute for breeders really knowing their lines and what sorts of problems might be expected or eliminated based on combining pedigrees. A test is only a snapshot of THAT particular dog (and this is even being nice and assuming these tests are accurate). I've seen dogs with a1 hips that certain breeders will avoid because in combination with other lines, are known to produce bad hips. We can't realistically eliminate health problems just based on testing individual dogs. For one, a dog that is "clear" of something like HD can still produce it, and two if we just start eliminated ALL dogs that have any problem or might carry any problem, we won't be left with much. To me, this is where breeding becomes more of an art than a science. I'm not a breeder, this is just how I feel on the matter. I do not rule out breeders because they aren't running a dozen tests on each dog.
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post #6 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 05:59 PM
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Xeph.....I agree with you.
Thanks! That truly means a lot coming from you, Robin!

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post #7 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 06:05 PM
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I can see testing when bringing in a new dog to their breeding program but it doesn't make sense to me to test puppies, or dogs that have been in a program. If a breeder, with an established line like Robin's, Lee's, Chris and Tim, have not had any issues with genetic diseases then what would they gain by testing? Do genetic disease skip several generations before showing up? Or do genetic diseases show up enough that a breeder would know?
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post #8 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 06:09 PM
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Going back to the first post, however..........

Since the genetic disease has cropped up in a breeder...the breeder is aware of it...shouldn't the breeder be testing both parents to see where the issue is and stopping use of the dogs? I'm not very familiar with JRD...

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post #9 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 07:17 PM
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I believe if the tests are available the dog should be tested for it. Having "limited funds" is not a excuse to not get the tests done, it’s actually the exact reason why you should NOT be breeding as people are not into it for the money but for the betterment of the breed. Narrowing the gene pool while eliminating health problems is actually a GOOD thing, it means that future generations will have FEWER problems not more.

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post #10 of 55 (permalink) Old 02-27-2011, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by KLCecil View Post
I believe if the tests are available the dog should be tested for it. Having "limited funds" is not a excuse to not get the tests done, it’s actually the exact reason why you should NOT be breeding as people are not into it for the money but for the betterment of the breed. Narrowing the gene pool while eliminating health problems is actually a GOOD thing, it means that future generations will have FEWER problems not more.
So dogs can be so expensive from reputable breeders no one can afford them? There has to be a little bit of give and take here. The buyers are the ones that will be absorbing those prices.

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