We have completed all the testing necessary to ensure that our puppies will not be affected by any of these diseases. The following DNA tests are what is recommended for golden retrievers.
Progressive Retinal Atrophy prcd-PRA Test
The genetic disorder, prcd-PRA , causes cells in the retina at the back of the eye to degenerate and die, even though the cells seem to develop normally early in life. The “rod” cells operate in low light levels and are the first to lose normal function. Night blindness results. Then the “cone” cells gradually lose their normal function in full light situations. Most affected dogs will eventually be blind.
Prcd-PRA is inherited as a recessive trait. This means a disease gene must be inherited from each parent in order to cause disease in an offspring.
Progressive Retinal Atrophy GR_PRA1 Test
A research team at the Animal Health Trust in the UK and the Swedish University in Uppsala have recently identified a mutation, GR_PRA1, that causes Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) in the golden retriever. OptiGen had previously identified another form of PRA caused by the prcd mutation in this breed.
Progressive Retinal Atrophy GR_PRA2 Test
Following their success in identifying the GR_PRA1 mutation in 2011, the research team at the Animal Health Trust (AHT) in the UK and the Swedish University in Uppsala subsequently identified a mutation, GR_PRA2, that also causes Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) in the golden retriever.
Ichthyosis ICT-A Test
Ichthyosis, whose name is derived from the Greek word for "fish" due to the fish-like scales that are observed on dogs with the disease, is a common inherited dermatosis observed in the Golden Retrievers of Europe and the United States. Dogs with Ichthyosis develop white scales on the skin soon after birth. The scales persist through the animal's life and progressively blacken, becoming dry and rough with age but typically do not cause itching. Secondary infectious complications (bacterial, fungal or parasitic) are occasionally associated with the condition.
Canine Degenerative Myelopathy DM Test
Canine Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) has been recognized for more than 35 years as a spontaneously occurring spinal cord disorder in older dogs, with age of onset ranging between 8 and 14 years.
Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa
Dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa (DEB) is a hereditary skin disease affecting dogs. Clinical signs of DEB are present at birth. Affected dogs have fragile skin that is easily damaged from rubbing or trauma resulting in blisters, ulcers and scarring of the skin. Areas that are most prone to blisters are the face, foot pads, genital areas and ears. In addition, affected dogs will develop blisters and ulcers inside the mouth and in the esophagus. Ulcerations of the skin and mucous membranes are painful and can become infected. Blistering of the skin tends to cease at around 8 months of age however, ulcers of the mouth and esophagus persist into adulthood. Dogs with DEB are often smaller than littermates, likely due to difficulties eating.
Muscular Dystrophy (Golden Retriever Type)
Golden Retriever muscular dystrophy is an inherited disease affecting Golden Retrievers. Affected dogs are unable to produce adequate amounts of a protein important for muscle contraction and relaxation. By 10 weeks of age affected puppies are noticeably smaller than littermates shortly after birth due to decreased growth associated with the inability to nurse. Affected dogs often need to be hand or bottle fed to prevent starvation. Beginning around 6 weeks of age, dogs begin to develop a progressively abnormal gait, muscle weakness, excessive drooling, muscle.
Osteogenesis Imperfecta (Golden Retriever Type)
Osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) is an inherited collagen disorder affecting dogs. Affected dogs typically present between 3 to 4 weeks of age with pain, lameness and fractures. OI is caused by a defect is in the way collagen is made. Because collagen is an important component of bone, bones of affected dogs are thinner than normal, fracture easily and do not heal properly. Other features of the disorder include loose joints and brittle teeth. Affected puppies may die shortly after birth and be smaller than littermates. Because of the severity of the disease, pups with OI are usually euthanized by 3 months of age.
Sensory Ataxic Neuropathy
Sensory Ataxic Neuropathy is an inherited neurologic condition affecting Golden Retrievers. Affected dogs typically present between 2 to 8 months of age with signs of neurologic disease. Symptoms include a lack of muscle coordination, abnormal gait and difficulty balancing especially affecting the hind limbs. Muscle mass appears normal and the condition does not appear to be painful. Although the disease progresses slowly, dogs are often humanely euthanized before three years of age
Heart and Eyes
All our dogs receive yearly heart and eye exams by our vet. She is very thorough and has trained under a certified eye specialist in Calgary. We feel very confident that she will find any issues should any arise.
Here at KountryKozy, we research all the latest health reports and studies. We have all the background information and results on the parents of our dogs to assist us in ensuring the correct tests are completed on our breeding dogs. We hope that this will continue to allow us to offer beautiful and healthy golden retriever puppies.