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Last call... Irish Setter Health - Online Survey closes Sept 30 2011

Irish Setter Health Survey

last call for your dog's data...

Survey closes on September 30 2011!


This survey is being conducted amongst the world of Irish Setters, and is not purely for dogs living in the UK. If you have not yet done so, please join in now!

D: Bitte nehmen Sie teil an der Online-Umfrage zur Gesundheit Ihres Irish Setters! Deadline 30.9.11

F: Veuillez svp participer à cette enquête au sujet de la santé de votre setter irlandais. Dernier Délai: 30.9.11


This vital information will tell the breed clubs health coordinators where to target research.

The survey can be accessed on www.isbc.org.uk or via the links given in the text below.


Irish Setter On-line Health Survey:


The Health Coordinators of all Irish Setter Associations and Clubs agree that it is important we obtain a snapshot of the state of Irish setter health with respect to known and suspected inherited disease. They also wish to identify those conditions that setter owners believe have the most serious impact on the health and welfare of their dogs, so that future initiatives can be targeted at the most important conditions.


To gather this information, two parallel online surveys have been set up; one for breeding bitches and one for all other setters. The surveys ask about any conditions that arose during the period from January 2005 to December 2010 in dogs that you either reared or owned.

The more data we collect the better, but please do not enter information about other dogs that may have been reported anecdotally to you; instead encourage the dog’s owner to complete the survey.


The survey should not take too long to complete; you only have to enter data about setters if you have had one or more affected by a listed specific conditions. To help there is brief description of each condition listed that can be viewed by clicking on the “More Info” button.


Entries are completely anonymous and cannot be traced, in order to encourage complete and honest reporting. The results will be analysed by the Chair of the Health Coordinators Committee, Professor Ed Hall, and publicised in due course.


To access the surveys follow these links:


For stud dogs and non-breeding bitches (pet dogs) <www.survey.bris.ac.uk/smvsfa/irishsetter-dog>


For breeding bitches - <www.survey.bris.ac.uk/smvsfa/irishsetter-breeding>



The survey will close on September 30 2011.


By participating you will be aiding efforts to improve the health of our breed.


Thank you in anticipation

Ed Hall


Breed Health Coordinator

Professor of Small Animal Internal Medicine

University of Bristol, UK


June 2011


Please feel free to crosspost. Susan  / updated 22. Sept. 2011

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Fortune fantasies:-)
Nearly all of the setters that I  have had  had a serious health problem from a Porta Caval shunt to Cushings.My vet advised me not to have anorther setter and what have I got? Three setters!
Sorry Henk - your comment means???

A bit off topic, but good news for me: today I had three of my dogs at the vets for eye testing: Coppersheen Bramble 11+ yrs, Northern Light vh Adelaarsvaren 8+ yrs and Coppersheen Coalville Lad 5+ yrs are all clinically unaffected by LOPRA.

I am with Pat, overall, all of my dogs have been fit and healthy,in the forty years I have been in the breed. Having 22 constantly, for all that length of time,and breeding from time to time, indicates the lines must have been good,and mine are similarly bred to Pat's. 

In my experience human nature is such that we tend to adapt and accept and then forget problems we may have experienced. We tend to become less aware. For example I have to watch out what I feed my bitch as she has a senstitive digestion. I adapt her food and we continue through life with not a worry... But is this right and hsould I consider this healthy?

Please do not get me wrong, Myra and Pat, I am not doubting the impression you have of your dogs. What I am trying to say is that unless breeders keep detailed written notes on every dog they breed over the 20+ years they have been in the breed then it will be impossible to say all were healthy. Our general impression of our own dogs only counts as 'anecdotal evidence' and what kind of evidence is that when it comes down to hard fact?

If on the other hand we have detailed reports on every dog we bred and keep in touch with puppy buyers, keep note of health issues, cause of death, special diet requirements, skin disorders, etc etc only then can we say we have a profound knowledge of the dogs we bred.

We can not expect 100% healthy dogs, that would be against nature. But we do need to be aware and stop and think at times. I think that is what this survey is all about. Assess the state of the breed, consider what is acceptable and decide what issues need adressing in future.


Susan, it is NOT an "impression" of my dogs' health - it is fact.   Since 1970 when I started in Irish:

Bloat (no dilation) in 1973 in male 6 month old puppy (ate too many plums on the ground LOL!)

GDV in 11 year old bitch & 13 year old bitch - neither bred by me

Entropion 2 cases - 1 in 1973 & 1 in 1976 - none since in any litter

1 bitch died after a c-section due to a toxic allergic reaction to the halothane anaesthetic used at that time

Her handreared puppy was PTS at 4 months after progressive paralysis - no diagnosis despite countless tests

I vaccinate every 3 years once the dog is 2 years old.

I do NOT use any form of flea control as we don't have fleas/ticks whatever where we are.

I feed a diet predominantly raw beef/mutton/goat/chicken, plus what rabbits the dogs catch themselves, plus a little dry SOAKED dry food (NOT made in USA), plus raw eggs, lamb rearing milk powder, & yoghurt

The dogs have as much free exercise they want in over an acre.

All Irish either DNA tested or clear by descent CLAD & PRA rcd-1

Over the years I have used a stud dog who died eventually of bloat, bred from a litter sister of a bloat fatality, & apart from the 1973 puppy (who wasn't a classic GDV case) have never had a dog bred by me get bloat/GDV

No skin problems, no MO, no epilepsy, no Cushings/Addisons

Don't know how else to show you I DO have healthy dogs - & I would think Myra has pretty much the same sort of regime in her kennels.



Hi Pat, 

I had no intention of offending you and apologize if it came across that way.

All I can say is that we have not all been as fortunate.

LOL Susan - I wasn't offended at all!  No need to apologise.

I know that it may be hard to accept - & after reading of all the trials & tribulations on this Forum I'm not really surprised - but honestly my dogs are very healthy.  My vets have always said that if they relied on my lot for their bread & butter, they would starve! 

Can truly say that my biggest vet expenses are having frozen semen AIs, followed by my English Setter bitch having complications following whelping, due to a large intact rabbit leg being jammed in her stomach - found during the subsequent speying. The infection didn't stop her carrying & whelping 8 full term puppies but it did mean she had to be speyed - the bill was HORRENDOUS!!




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