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New testing scheme for ‘shaking puppy syndrome’
Affected dogs show severe terrors, mostly in the hind limbs.
Scientists identify mutation responsible for the disease 

Border terrier breeders are being encouraged to make use of a new test for ‘shaking puppy syndrome’.

Spongiform LeucoEncephaloMyelopathy (SLEM) is a hereditary disease that can affect puppies from the time they begin attempting to walk. Affected dogs show severe terrors, mostly in the hind limbs.

Scientists at the University of Missouri, the Animal Health Trust (AHT) and Wisdom Health, were able to identify the mutation responsible.

The Kennel Club has approved the official new testing scheme after consultation with the breed health co-ordinator. Secretary Caroline Kisko said the test will help breeders to eradicate the disease, also known as ‘shaking puppy syndrome’ in the breed.

“We would encourage all breeders of border terriers to make use of this new test,” she added.

Dr Cathryn Mellersh, head of canine genetics at the AHT, said: “My team were able to supply a number of DNA samples from affected cases in the UK, which helped to confirm that the mutation discovered in the US is the same mutation segregating in affected border terriers in the UK.

“It can be very difficult to identify the gene linked to an emerging neurological disease such as this, but the result is fantastic and we are very pleased to be able to quickly offer the DNA test at the AHT for the UK and European market.”


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Amur leopard cubs caught on camera

News Story 1
 A pair of Amur leopards have been captured on camera for the first time since their birth. The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland announced the birth in July, but with human presence being kept to a minimum, it was not known how many cubs had been born.

Motion sensitive cameras have now revealed that two cubs emerged from the den - at least one of which may be released into the wild in Russia within the next two or three years. The Amur leopard habitat is not open to the public, to help ensure the cubs retain their wild instincts and behaviour. Image © RZSS 

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News Shorts
New canine and feline dentistry manual announced

A new canine and feline dentistry and oral surgery manual has been published by the BSAVA. Announcing the news on its website, the BSAVA said this latest edition contains new step-by-step operative techniques, together with full-colour illustrations and photographs.

‘This is a timely publication; veterinary dentistry is a field that continues to grow in importance for the general veterinary practitioner,’ the BSAVA said. ‘The manual has been fully revised and updated to include the most relevant, evidence-based techniques.’

The BSAVA Manual of Canine and Feline Dentistry and Oral Surgery, 4th edition is available to purchase from