The Kennel Club's seemingly irresponsible policy regarding cryptorchidism.

(5 Posts)
KindDogsTail Tue 29-Mar-16 13:48:53

I have a year old pedigree KC registered male dog who has cryptorchidism.
Cryptorchidism is generally considered to be an inherited autosomal recessive condition. This means the sire and the dam both have to be carriers for a puppy to be affected. Of the puppies born, one might be affected, others will be carriers. Bitches obviously will not show any evidence of being carriers.

I have waited a year to make sure the testicle was not just going to come down late.

Now, my dog will have to have the hidden testicle removed which will be a more expensive and invasive operation than ordinary castration would have been. Moreover, as I have had no trouble from him being entire, and might have liked him to be able to have puppies, I would not necessarily have had him castrated, however it would be irresponsible to breed from him now.

My vet considers the condition to be genetic too.

I bought my puppy from a person who had bred from his pedigree family pet for the first and only time. He would not have been able to know that she is a carrier.
The stud dog used has a great many progeny. He must have been spreading the cryptorchidism gene everywhere and many male puppies in his line must have shown the condition.

I reported the stud to The Kennel Club. I havve not got the email in fron of me to reproduce it word for word but the gist of their reply is that it is 'unclear' that Cryptorchidism is a hereditary condition. They do not require dogs with this condition to be registered as such.

As by any common understanding cryptorchidism is indeed an inherited condition, the Kennel Club is, in my opinion, hiding behind a technicality.

They say that if I get my vet to write a letter saying it is an inherited condition they will send it to the breeder of my dog and it will be up to him to let the other owners of the litter know. As the dogs were £400 a year ago I would say he would be unlikely to do this!

Meanwhile the Kennel Club will go on keeping the stud dog which is a cryptorchidism carrier registered on its books, and this dog will go on to produce carrier puppies year after year.

There can be other conditions clustered with cryptorchidism too such as luxating patella. This is less the case with the breed I have, but the same principle would apply to the other breeds where this could happen.

I do not therefore agree that the Kennel Club promotes the well being of a breed as they claim they do. Kennel Club registered puppies go for double the price of unregistered ones.

I wonder what would happen in Germany where breeders have to follow very strict rules?

cheerfulmary Tue 29-Mar-16 14:29:19

I do not therefore agree that the Kennel Club promotes the well being of a breed as they claim they do I think it is a well known fact that the KC do not promote the well being of dogs health. There are many examples of this.

Re breeding yourself though - it should be your responsibility if buying a puppy with a view to breeding that you check out the health of your puppies parents. Also any litters that they have had. I would want to go back several generations and check health and temperament in all of these generations before I would even consider breeding.

tabulahrasa Tue 29-Mar-16 14:53:05

What did you expect them to do though?

The KC keep a register of pedigree dogs, that's pretty much it.

They don't own the stud dog, they're not breeding from him, he is in fact a pedigree and therefore is eligible to be on the register, unless a breeder is on the assured breeder scheme (and that's not implemented well anyway) they don't even have to do health tests...that's up to the buyer to check on and decide if they want to go ahead and buy a puppy.

If you'd gone to a good breeder they'd have known the health history of their bitch's lines whether it was the first litter or not, but that's kind of the risk you take buying cheap from a back yard breeder to be honest - and yes £400 is cheap for any breed that I'm aware of for a health tested KC registered puppy.

KindDogsTail Tue 29-Mar-16 17:47:52

Tabula
The Kennel Club is supposed to promote good health not just give out pedigree certificates so the price of puppies can be put up.

There is no test at present for cryptorchidism. The only way to know about it is when male dogs show it.

The Kennel club does now have more about health checks on their site including an inbreeding percentage calculator to try to stop inbreeding the intention of which is to try to prevent hereditary conditions.

I have now reported to them that a stud dog they have on their list must be a carrier for cryptorchidism. I expected them to say they could let the stud owner know, and the other offspring's owners know. I expected that all the stud's registered progeny might have a warning next to their names on the pedigree data base.

Instead they are trying to shirk the issue by saying there is no clarity about the fact that it is hereditary.

Back yard breeder
I went to the breeder I did because their dog was a family pet with children, and I wanted a puppy that would be a family pet used to children.They were not a back yard breeder as such, just breeding from their bitch once before getting her spayed. My dog does have an exceptionally good temperament and is beautiful physically apart from the cryptorchidism.

Checking I can see that the owner of the bitch should have checked all the progeny of the stud by telephoning the owners of all the stud's puppies - going back a few generations. That would not have been easy for him and he may not have even thought of it. A much easier way would be if the Kennel Club took this health condition seriously and build up information of dogs presenting with the condition.

Yes, Cheerful I personally should have checked all the previous puppies of the stud. First though I would have needed the owner to cooperate and give me the contacts of something like thirty people and I would have needed to get in touch one by one. And what if any had been missed? That is why it would be easier if the Kennel Club helped take responsibility.

Other breeding Organisations abroad
Here are quotes from the handbook of breeding rules for the Federation Cynologique International and then VDH in Germany. I think I would expect the Kennel CLub to be more like these organisations.

FCI
Dogs with eliminating faults such as e.g. unsound temperament, congenital deafness or blindness, hare-lip, cleft palate, substantial dental defects or jaw anomalies, PRA, epilepsy, cryptorchidism, monorchidism, albinism, improper coat colours or diagnosed severe hip dysplasia may not be bred.

With regard to surfacing hereditary defects, e.g. HD or PRA, the FCI member countries and contract partners are obliged to record affected animals, combat these defects in a methodical manner, continuously record their development and report to the FCI on this matter when requested. If a DNA test is performed, the identification (chip or tattoo) of the dog must be checked and certified by the veterinarian who collects the sample as is the case with any health protocol; the test result certificate from the laboratory must include the dog’s identification.

VDA (using google translate)

Erbgesund a pedigree dog is when he inherited standard features, breed type and breed typical nature, but no substantial hereditary defects which could impair the functional health of its descendants.

For breeding not admitted are especially dogs who zuchtausschließende error, eg kind of weak, congenital deafness or blindness, harelip, Splitmouth, significant tooth error and jaw anomalies, PRA, epilepsy, cryptorchidism, Monorchidism albinism, wrong color, evidence of significant hip - dysplasia and when determined by the breed dog breed clubs, other HD - grade, skeletal malformations, etc.

The £400 price
The price for pure bred but not pedigree dogs in the breed I have would be a half of the price I paid. So it is as if the only difference would come from the Kennel Club pedigree certificate. There is no DNA testing though for that.

No doubt even more expensive regular breeders, including those overbreeding from some Kennel Club registered pedigree bitch, may well have been using the same stud dog. So even if I were ever paying more in the future as you suggest Tabula I would need to try to check lots of other progeny on both the sire and dam's side if possible first.

Anyway, maybe this will help warn other people to do just that.

tabulahrasa Tue 29-Mar-16 19:14:21

"The Kennel Club is supposed to promote good health not just give out pedigree certificates so the price of puppies can be put up."

They do promote it, they don't check or enforce it though.

The breeder you bought your puppy from is the one you should be informing, what you're expecting the kennel club to do isn't part of what they actually do.

It would be great if they did, but it just isn't.

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