Health Sub Committee
Thursday 19th April 2007
Fiona Braddon FB
Margaret Brown MB
Linda Heron LH
Jackie Hodge JH
Jeff Sampson JS
Joy Venturi Rose JVR
Janet Cole
1. To elect a chairman
Jeff Sampson was proposed as Chairman by Linda Heron and seconded by Jackie
Hodge. All in favour
2. To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 19th April 2006
The minutes of the meeting held 19th April 2006 were agreed.
3. Matters Arising
All matters arising were covered by agenda items later in the meeting.
4. OptiGen prcd mutation test for PRA (GPRA)
JS initially gave an overview of the current KC position:
All results from tests reported by Optigen fom 1st July 07 will be recorded by the KC
and new test results will be published in the Breed Record Supplement 3rd quarter
The on line test application on OptiGen website will require the owner to sign
agreement for KC to publish result of test.
Results will also appear on all new registrations from July forward.
The parental status will appear on the registration certificate of progeny of any tested
dog, assuming the information has been passed to the KC.
JS said he will arrange for KC Registration certificates to be updated of dogs
previously tested if Optigen certificates are they are sent to his office or to Gary
Johnson at the KC (NB: not to Aylesbury as they will charge).
Puppies from 2 ‘Normal’ parents will be assigned ‘Normal’ by hereditary status.
There will be a Press release to the Public informing them that from July Optigen
will automatically forward all results of UK registered dogs to UK KC. The KC will
also request that Certificates from dogs tested prior to July07 be sent to KC - this will
be voluntary in interests of the breed.
There will be a new section on KC website – prcd PRA tested dogs
JS acknowledge it was an issue and expressed his support for permanent compulsory
identification and the BVA supported this. However he reported at present there isn’t
any movement by the KC to make permanent identification mandatory.
JS mentioned that many breed clubs have now included this within their code of
practice, however conceded that with the number of Labrador registrations it would
be difficult to police.
JVR queries why vets did not look for tattoo / microchips when testing dogs.
JS reported that the BVA is now recommending this and it would become practice for
vets to do so. Vets will make a note on the certificate that they have identified a dog
when involved in any testing procedure. In near future vets will be checking for ID
and offering to microchip before carrying out the test.
Clear by parentage
The issue of clear by parentage and ensuring that the registered parents are the actual
parents was raised.
JS reported that the KC was not yet ready to make PI compulsory.
JS recommend that all dogs should be Optigen tested even if they are clear by
LH suggested that the DNA profile of dogs be logged by the KC.
JS commented at present the only way forward is by peer pressure to ensure DNA
samples are logged.
FB suggested that a DNA test could be competed by Optigen when testing for PRA.
JS reported that Optigen used the American system for DNA testing which did not
use the up to date benchmark markers.
Recommended by KC - a German company owned by Pedigree Masterfoods –
Medigenomics. This company is approved by Society for Animal Genetics.
At present Optigen is only company who carry out prcd – PRA test. They have
patented it. They have licenced two companies -one in Australia & one in Canada.
They have NOT issued a licence to company in Germany and tests done by this
German company are not valid (see Optigen website) JS reported that Labochin was
offering a PRA test ‘comparable’ to that offered by Optigen.
The test has been withdrawn from UK dogs after Optigen threatened the KC if they
published any results.
JS reported that AHT was trying to get a licence to offer the Optigen test in the UK.
Withholding test results
It was mentioned that many breeders have had their dog tested but won’t reveal the
JS responded that because of the confidentiality between Optigen and the breeder the
KC did not have this information and could not reveal the results.
Field Trial dogs
As a result of a number of prominent stud dogs being tested as carriers, concern was
raised that these dogs and descendants were being removed from breeding
programmes with the likely impact that the gene pool will shrink.
It was agreed that an education programme was necessary and members clubs should
look to the event being organised by Northumberland and Durham LRC.
5. Accredited Breeders Scheme – update
There was a significant debate around the qualifications for becoming an accredited
breeder, with some appearing on the list who had never actually bred a litter or others
who were known puppy farmers.
KC can now check compliance with ACBS independently – inspectors to visit kennel
JS reported that the one of the step the KC was taking to highlight the experienced
breeders with the introduction of accolades.
Accolade 1: to have bred and registered litters over a ten year period or more.
Accolade 2: to be a member of two or more breed clubs - although JS could not
clarify how this would be checked.
Accolade 3: to have owned or bred three or more dogs which have stud book entries
Policing the Accredited Breeders scheme
JS reported that it was now procedure for inspection visits for anyone on the ABS
who bred more than 20 litters per year or if a complaint had been registered against
the breeder.
Any breeder who cancels a visit more than twice will automatically be suspended
from the scheme.
In addition the KC was also attempting to identify rogue breeders before they join the
KC puppy register
JS stated that it was the intention of the KC that accredited breeder puppies appear at
the top of the list of the KC puppy register.
JVR requested that breeders who health test should be highlighted within the scheme.
JS agreed that it was a possibility and would look in to the matter.
JS also mentioned that there is a possibility of a reduced registration cost for
accredited breeders.
6 MRD – information and guidelines for breeders
MB raised the issue of dog that had received an eye certificate fail for MRD which
were subsequently reversed.
JS clarified in this situation the fail would be removed from the registration
7. BVA / KC / ISDS Eye Scheme – Annual Report
JS agreed to produce an annual report on trends.
8. OptiGen – Posterior Polar Cataracts (HC) update
JS could offer no further update but agreed to look in to this matter and report back.
9. Haemophilia
JH raised the question of occurrence of Haemophilia in Labradors.
JS reported that he was not aware that it was a problem in Labradors but would look
in to the issue and see if there is an increase in cases.
10. Labrador Myopathy Test / Incidence
JS reported that a testing for Myopathy in Labradors was being instigated by
Professor Matthew Bins.
On a relatively small sample the sample of blood held at his hospital tests had shown
a 2% frequency of carriers in Labradors.
Tests had also shown there was a higher frequency in working Labradors in the USA.
Discovered in Tieray, France. Test currently available from a French Laboratory –
info from JS
Professor Bins next step was to increase the sample size so that more definitive
conclusions could be drawn.on incidence in UK.
11. Stud dog on line registrations
JVR raised the issue of on line puppy registration and the method by which the stud
dog owner received a letter asking them to confirm that their dog was the sire. JVR
felt that this was not as safe as the old method and the system was open to abuse. In
addition concern was raised over the short period of time for a stud dog owners to
reply to / return KC letter and whether these would be accepted late.
The general view was that the system was secure.
JS considered it would not be a problem if stud dog owners return letters
12. Sub Committee delegate link club
There had been some concern that clubs did not know who their health committee
link representative was.
It was agreed that it would be raised at the breed council meeting,
Members of Health Sub Committee were asked to contact their link clubs and remind
them they are the link representative for Health issues.
JS stated at the end of the discussion that there was an excellent working relationship
with Labrador breeders.
The meeting closed at 12.40pm