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We've been having some fascinating discussions on the two previous forum posts 'Animal Protection' started by Henk and 'Advice on Bloat' started by myself.
There has been loads of excellent input and we've pretty well exhausted the subject. I think the general feeling is that once scientists have found the DNA-tests for Bloat, Epilepsy and other genetic illnesses, the Irish Setter will be a healthier breed. The impression is that providing breeders do all the available health tests the breed can continue to go from strength to strength.
I would like to extend the discussion to 'what comes next' - when we have DNA tests.
Are all problems solved? Does it suffice to find the Carriers, breed them to Clears and from then on select only Clears to carry on the breeding programm? Or do we choose outbreeding all the time in the hope the problem will disappear?

interesting links: Canine Diversity website

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Lynn wrote: "also what worries me is IF we had not know about laylas condition we could have bred from her on the hereditry clear factor ."

In the Netherlands there is a seminar organized by the Dutch club with professor Stades, end of this month on eye-diseases. In publications, the reason for that is not given.

With a bit of insight in lineage concerned, it might not only be a local fire but a worldwide one.Lets hope it isnt. But if it is, the most relevant information for breeders was not provided.

Whether it is or isnt, it shows clearly dangers of linebreeding=inbreeding the way it is done now.
Lyn, you have not mentioned the breeding of your bitch but I think I know, and I know who bred her. Let me add to your comments that the breeders of your bitch were also absolutely honest and honorable and informed the Breed Clubs, after which it was brought to the membership, who incidentally, are 100% behind them and very grateful for their honesty. To my knowledge cases of LOPRA are very rare in the UK, but I stand corrected if I am wrong. Layla was is very young to have the condition.
IT IS ONLY THE KC RULING THAT SORTED OUT THE DOGS IN THE UK. Pat that is not correct. It was the Breed Clubs on the insistance of the UK breeders who forced the KC to stop registering litters from CLAD carriers otherwise it would still be going on now. I do wish you would all stop blaming the UK dogs and the UK breeders for everything. There are many countries in the world who do not import British dogs and haven't done so for decades. The Americas for instance. Australia and New Zealand import more from the USA than from the UK. Apart from the continuing UK bashing this is proving to be another informative discussion.
Eva, I was NOT blaming the UK breeders - as I am not in the UK we often just get the bare bones & not the fill-in information. As for blaming UK dogs - I don't think I did that at all. My dogs are ALL English lines & despite the "prophets of doom" will remain that way. As for USA imports into New Zealand - it is becoming more common in some other breeds, but I think (heaven help me if I'm wrong here LOL!) there has been only ONE Irish Setter. Australia is, however, a totally different kettle of fish - there have been many US imports there (dogs & semen). NZ breeders have then used/bought dogs from there to New Zealand - & here I shall REALLY stick my neck out & say that the results of this have been a change in the Irish Setter here not always to the good (nor to the Breed Standard). Each country has its own cross to bear...
Pat - it was the "prophets of doom" I was aiming at. I do agree with you about US imports.
(This is off topic, however!!!)
Yes, you are right that Australia has had many more imports from the USA than from the UK and I agree with Pat that we have seen a change in the Irish Setter with a clear distinction between the types here. However, the UK line is still alive and I believe moving to a greater strength. We are here, you just have to look a little harder!!!!! The USA type has the same health problems that the UK line is experiencing. (and we won't go into any further discussion here about the two types.....)

One of the problems that I do see (and this is from personal experience) there appears to be great reluctance to export dogs from UK to Australia. On the other hand, breeders in Australia who are interested in the USA lines seem to have much more success bringing dogs from USA.

(Back on Topic) From my perspective, I believe the history of dog breeding is a cultural thing and culture is always difficult to change. I remember when I first started with my IS that I took the advice from the breeders I got my dogs from and I think this is probably true for most of the breeders out there. When you first buy a puppy from a breeder their advice tends to mould your own breeding plan. There are not many breeders out there who do not line-breed to some extent, so linebreeding was seen as the norm when you first got into the dog world. .

I was recently researching field working line pedigrees and I see the same linebreeding occurring in those lines - grandfather to granddaughter, neice to uncle, etc. Linebreeding is not just a tool for the "showies". These practices probably originated from livestock breeding??

It doesn't mean the dog world fraternity can't change, but it will take time and dedication and recognition of the need to change practices.
The quote below was given in reply to another poster on a canine genetics List I belong to - I have permission from John to post his reply here. He is a very eminent research scientist (among other things) & his Salukis are renowned - & absolutely beautiful. He did say that anyone on this list is free to contact him if they wish to further debate his post (G).

> I WISH we had tests for the big problems in my breed: Bone cancer &
> Bloat.

Both of those are probabilistic events, almost certainly polygenic, for which a
single genetic test is somewhat unlikely to be informative.

It might be more profitable to look for "life style factors" (some of those are
known) and for "associated features" (conformational, behavioral, whatever)
linked to the probability of bone cancer and/or of bloat.

John E. Burchard, Ph.D.
Tepe Gawra Salukis
Thanks for this, Pat. John Burchard is also one of the experts quoted in the K9 article that Margaret put on line here. Maybe you could get John to join in on our discussion here? We could accept his Salukis as 'Honorary Setters' VBG
On the topic of genetic diversity being something that is helpful in addition to DNA testing...

I just went to the All Setter Stud Dog Directory for the first time. http://settersatstud.com The Irish Setter Club of Greater Tulsa, Inc put it together. IT is just what we all need to support in order to spread news of stud dogs around so that we can invigorate our gene pools more. I LOVE the way many countries offer a club website with all eligible breeding dogs and clearances on it. This might grow into a site that could bring that type of information to one spot. IT does cost money (fundraiser) but not much. There are very few dogs on it right now, I'd like to see it get used!

Seems our discussion was just a few weeks ahead of times...;-))

It sems the 'Bateson Report' is causing quite some stirr... see the following links for more detailed information:

The full report by Patrick Bateson

'Dog World' discussion here
Hi Susan,
I have printed the full report and will read it later on. Thank you for the link!




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