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New DNA testing scheme for border collies
Border collies affected by severe sensory neuropathy are euthanised on welfare grounds before they reach two years of age.

Breeders urged to test for severe sensory neuropathy

A new DNA testing programme for severe sensory neuropathy in border collies has been approved by the Kennel Club, following consultation with the breed’s health coordinator.

Sensory neuropathy is a neurological disease that is caused by the degeneration of motor nerve cells. Its onset usually occurs between two and seven months of age, with signs including knuckling of feet, self-mutilation wounds, progressive ataxia and loss of sensation of all four limbs.

The prognosis for sensory neuropathy is poor and the dog’s quality of life can be severely affected. As there are no effective treatments, border collies affected by the condition are euthanised on welfare grounds before they reach the age of two.

In a press release, the Kennel Club said: “The Kennel Club constantly reviews DNA testing schemes and programmes in conjunction with breed clubs to ensure that breeders are supported with resources which help them to make responsible breeding decisions.

“Test results will be added to the dog’s registration details which will trigger the publication of the result in the next available Breed Records Supplement. The result will appear on any new registration certificate issued for the dog and on the registration certificates of any future progeny of the dog, and also on the Health Test Results Finder on the Kennel Club website. 

“Results for dogs already tested can also be recorded, but owners will need to submit copies of the DNA certificates themselves.”

The Kennel Club adds that if the owner includes the original registration certificate for the dog (not a copy) then a new registration certificate will be issued, with the DNA result on it, free of charge. 

Image (C) Ruth Dairymple/Kennel Club.

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ZSL London Zoo shares animal X-rays

News Story 1
 A selection of X-ray images showing the inner workings of frogs, turtles, snakes and geckos have been shared by veterinary surgeons at ZSL London Zoo.

Taken as part of a routine health check, the images have been shared as part of ‘Vets in Action’ week - a hand’s on role-playing experience for children that explores the life of a zoo vet.

ZSL London Zoo veterinary nurse Heather Mackintosh said: “It’s great to be able to share the work that goes on behind the scenes at the Zoo to keep our residents in tip-top condition – and our visitors are always amazed to find out more about their favourite animals.” 

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Vets in developing nations given free access to BSAVA’s online library

BSAVA has teamed up with the WSAVA, the WSAVA Foundation and FECAVA to offer vets in developing nations free access to its online library.

The Association’s ‘Foundation Collection’ is comprised of more than 70 hours of articles, lectures and book chapters covering topics such as basic handling skills, working on a budget and emergency triage. Some of the countries set to benefit include Albania, Georgia, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda and Tanzania.

Nicolette Hayward, of BSAVA International Affairs Committee said: “Our mission is to promote excellence in small animal practice through education and science, so we are delighted to work with WSAVA, the WSAVA Foundation and FECAVA to share these high-quality resources to the veterinary profession in low and middle-income countries.”