Intervertebral disc disease is a serious condition that is affecting 1 in 4 of our precious Dachshunds. It is thought to be hereditary and sadly there is no cure. In some cases crate rest can be sufficient in getting your Dachshund back up on their feet but other more severe cases require surgery for a good prognosis.
How does it all work?
Intervertebral discs are cushioning pads of fibrocartilage that sit between most of the vertebra of the spinal column. Imagine these as shock absorbers taking every bash and bump that your Dachshunds do while enjoying daily life. The discs have an outer layer of tough fibrous tissue and a center that is more of a gel-like substance.
Unfortunately, intervertebral discs are subject to degeneration, bulging outward, and even bursting or rupturing. When something goes wrong with a disc, the material inside escapes into the spinal column, pressing against the spinal cord or nerve roots, which causes pain, nerve damage, and sometimes, paralysis. This is the condition known as intervertebral disc disease or IVDD.
Depending on the location of the damaged disc, problems can occur anywhere in the Dachshunds body from the neck to the rear limbs. In humans, the condition is sometimes called a slipped disc or a herniated disc.
IVDD is one of the most common neurologic disorders seen in dogs. Most aging dogs have some degeneration of intervertebral discs, which commonly results in a condition known as spondylosis. Most of the time, spondylosis doesn’t cause pain or weakness and doesn’t progress to intervertebral disc disease. Dachshunds tend to go down with IVDD of the lumbar area between the ages of 4 and 6 years old. If all dogs were tested and when partnering a dog with a low number of calcifications (and in different areas) we could possibly start to control this disease.
For more information please visit the Dachshund Breed Councils IVDD website
Cord 1 Progressive Retinal Atrophy, more commonly known as PRA, is a general term for a group of diseases causing degeneration of the retina, leading to a loss of vision. One form of this disorder is known as cord1-PRA, which stands for cone-rod dystrophy-PRA.It was originally found in Longhaired Dachshunds but more recently it was found to be in smooths as well. The Animal Health Trust has been working hard to try and combat the disease and with all breeders testing we can hopefully eradicate it from our beloved canines forever.
To learn about LAFORA disease in Miniature Wire Haired Dachshunds please
Clear Carrier and Affected?
This all sounds very complicated but if you look at the chart to your right you will see how the PRA inheritance happens.
A Clear put to a clear will always result in clears. This combination is perfect as all offspring will be hereditary clear.
A clear put to a carrier will result in 50% of puppies clear and 50% carriers. *Now carriers will not get the disease but can pass the gene on that causes the disease if not put to another clear.
With any mating apart from clear to clear all subsequent puppies should be individually tested to find out their PRA status. A clear to an affected will cause all puppies to be carriers.
A carrier to a carrier mating should never be done!! A mere 25% of puppies will be clear, 25% of the litter will be affected and 50% carriers! This is not an acceptable mating!
A carrier to an affected will produce 50% carrier and 50% affected - again not an acceptable mating! Two affected dogs being mated will only result in affected puppies - this should never ever be done!!
We believe that to breed responsibly all dogs should have the relevant tests carried out. We want to ensure that the babies that we breed have a very long and healthy life with you. With Dachshunds it is imperative that all breeding dogs are tested for PRA cord 1 along with spine x-rays. In late 2016 the Dachshund Breed Council started a scheme to have spines x-rayed taken and graded for anyone who plans to use their Dachshund for breeding. We are proud to say that we have been the first to utilise the scheme and Nev was graded with a score that we were thrilled with. Please CLICK HERE for photos and more information on Nevs x-rays and scroll down this page for more information about IVDD.