Inherited Diseases. What, When, Where

Hip Dysplasia – Anytime after your dog turns 2 years of age your dog should be x-ray’d for hip dysplasia. X-rays are submitted directly from the vet’s office to Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) for evaluation.   OFA will send a rating with an OFA certification number to the dog owner. for form. 

Heart Certification – at 1 year of age your dog should be checked for pulmonic stenosis.    Pulmonic stenosis is a defect involving the pulmonic valve and/or the surrounding structures of the right ventricle and pulmonary artery.  Your regular Vet or a Cardiologist can perform the OFA evaluation.  Go to to print the form and send the completed form by your veterinarian to OFA for certificate. 

Eye Certification - Juvenile cataracts in dogs occur when a white film develops in the ocular lens. Many dogs develop cataracts late in life, but some Boykin Spaniels develop cataracts much earlier, even into puppyhood. You will need to have your dog examined by a licensed ophthalmologist.  A licensed ophthalmologist will examine for cataracts and many other diseases of the eye.  Since many eye diseases are time sensitive, ophthalmologists recommend annual or bi-annual examinations.  For any dogs used in breeding, their eyes need to be examined or re-examined no more than 12 months before breeding. Testing can be done as early as 6 weeks of age. for more information. 

Exercise Induced Collapse (EIC) - EIC affected dogs will collapse after 5-10 minutes of high drive trigger activities such as chasing a ball or hunting. Though a large majority of these cases recover completely within a short time frame (less than 30 minutes) some dogs have been known to die of the condition.  Paw Print Genetics and University of Minnesota perform DNA EIC testing accepted by OFA.

Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA) - The signs and symptoms of CEA vary from dog to dog. For some dogs, it’s not so bad, while for others, it can lead to vision loss due to holes or pits in different layers of the eye. Depending on the size and location of the holes, vision loss can be slight or total. CEA can also lead to retinal detachment.  A DNA swab test can be done at any age and will determine the CEA status of your dog. Paw Print Genetics and Optigen Labs perform DNA CEA testing accepted by OFA.   

Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) - is an incurable, progressive disease of the canine spinal cord that is similar in many ways to ALS in humans. As the dog's spinal cord deteriorates, they develop hind limb weakness, followed by paralysis, and eventually the affects spread to the front limbs.  Onset is typically after the age of 7 years but can be sooner.   DNA swab test that can be done at any age and will determine the DM status of your dog.  Paw Print Genetics and University of Missouri perform DM testing accepted by OFA.          

Patellar Luxation (knees)– A physical manipulation of the knee by your vet to determine if the knee cap pops in and out easily. PL is graded on a scale of 1-4 severity.  Dog must be 1 year old or older . Go to for form. 



Expected results for breeding strategies  
Parent 1 
Parent 2 Status
Normal/Clear Carrier Affected
Normal/Clear All = Normal/Clear 1/2 = Normal/Clear 
1/2 = Carrier
All = Carrier
Carrier 1/2 = Normal/Clear
1/2 = Carrier
1/4 = Normal/Clear 
1/2 = Carrier 
1/4 = Affected
1/2 = Carrier
1/2 = Affected
Affected All = Carrier 1/2 = Carrier
1/2 = Affected
All = Affected