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Kennel Club introduces new DNA test for shar-peis
POAG is recessive in the shar-pei, so carriers can be safely bred to clear dogs without the risk of producing clinically affected offspring.

Uptake for new scheme proves popular at health day

A new official DNA testing scheme for primary open angle glaucoma/primary lens luxation (POAG/PLL) in the shar-pei has been approved by the Kennel Club.

In February, the Kennel Club - together with breed clubs - held a sharp-pei health day at the Animal Health Trust (AHT) in Newmarket.


Thrilled with the uptake for the scheme, Cathryn Mellersh, head of canine genetics at the AHT, said that more than 40 dogs were swabbed for DNA tests on the day.

“The frequency of the mutation was very high among these dogs,” she explained. “This means that is is vitally important that carriers continue to be used for breeding at least for the next few generations.”

She added that not using carriers could lead to an unacceptable reduction in the genetic diversity of the breed.

“POAG is recessive in the shar-pei, so carriers can be safely bred to clear dogs without the risk of producing clinically affected offspring,” she continued. “ Although any puppies that might be used for breeding should themselves be tested prior to breeding.”

The Kennel Club constantly reviews DNA testing schemes in conjunction with breed clubs to ensure that breeders are supported with resources to help them make responsible breeding decisions.

The DNA testing scheme for the shar-pei was approved following consultation with the breed’s health co-ordinator on behalf of the breed clubs.

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Newborn okapi named after Meghan Markle

News Story 1
 An endangered okapi recently born at London Zoo has been named Meghan - after Prince Harry’s fiancé Meghan Markle - in celebration of the upcoming royal wedding. Okapis are classed as endangered in the wild, having suffered ongoing declines since 1995. Zookeeper Gemma Metcalf said: “We’re very pleased with how mother and baby are doing. Oni is being very attentive, making sure she regularly licks her clean and keeping a watchful eye over Meghan as she sleeps.” Image © ZSL London Zoo  

News Shorts
Ten new cases of Alabama rot confirmed

Anderson Moores Veterinary Specialists has confirmed 10 new cases of Alabama rot, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the UK to 122.

In a Facebook post, the referral centre said the cases were from County Durham, West Yorkshire, Greater Manchester, Staffordshire, Sussex, West Somerset, Devon, and Powys.

Pet owners are urged to remain vigilant and seek advice from their vet if their dog develops unexplained skin lesions/sores.