When we decided to breed our Great Pyrenees one of the first things we looked into was health testing. Health testing is an incredibly important part of breeding because with healthy parents you are more likely to end up with healthy puppies. Many genetic diseases can be passed down from parents to their offspring, and health problems vary by breed. You can look at your breed club’s website for the recommended health tests you should perform on your dog.
The first testing we decided to do was DNA testing because if one of our dogs had a genetic disease there was no point in breeding them or continuing health testing. We compared DNA tests – there are a lot out there! For Great Pyrenees there are three common genetic tests that were recommended that we should test for: Canine Multifocal Retinopathy (CMR1), Degenerative Myelopathy (DM), and Glanzmann’s Thrombasthenia Type 1 (GT). We ended up choosing Embark Veterinary because included in the 200+ risks and genetic diseases that they look for were these three tests.
Embark also looks at the coefficient of inbreeding (COI) and genetic diversity. With these tools we were able to determine the expected COI of the litter that would be produced. These are important factors to consider because purebred dogs can have terrible inbreeding problems and little to no genetic diversity. This can make sickly puppies and affect the health of future generations in the breed.
We have been very happy with Embark for DNA testing. We registered the results with the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals, and love that we have that option. We’re so pleased with Embark that we asked to be a part of their referral program and get other breeders these tests at a discounted rate. Use this link to get $50 off of your Embark breeders kit and test your dog(s) for over 200+ risks and genetic diseases: https://www.talkable.com/x/UGT5e7
Happy hump day!
-Folks at Kathy Ann’s Farm