Exclusively Setters

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As an interim measure until the official register provided by the Kennel Club is fully up and running, the SEISC has decided to offer an opportunity for owners to post their recent PRA rcd4 DNA test results.
This will be on our PRA rcd4 page.
This is available to all owners worldwide not just SEISC members and will be in a similar format to that already used by the Kennel Club.

For further details please see the Club website www.seisc.co.uk.


Listing will be available sometime today - slight kink in my "html"  !!

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Thank you, Michelle, for the link to your website and Thomas's pedigree.

Henk, the AHT have tried the DNA test for rcd4 on Irish Red and White Setters, including the ones diagnosed with LOPRA , but havent found any carriers or affected. It looks like we probably have a different form of LOPRA in IRWS, but it could be the third form which has been found in Irish Setters for which there is no DNA test as yet.

Sorry to hear rcd4 is showing up in working IRWS, lets hope some of the people with working reds start getting their dogs tested. I think Christiane has had two of hers tested already? I guess we will need to starting about making sure any reds used in the IRWS outcross programme have been tested

Yes your last remark certainly makes sense. Thomas was a candidate and that is why he was tested on eigtheen eyediseases, clad, pra rcd1, hd (all free) and last pra rcd4 (carrier). 

I don't know of much testing in working circles and have informed the ones in the Netherlands and a few abroad. It is interesting those of Christiane were all free, because their lineage is different (nearly no Moanruad).


Is Grouse a sister of Harry? Any idea which side of her pedigree the gene has come from?
Will Harry be checked for rcd4? There are now quite a few registered IRWS in Ireland (and elsewhere) who have Harry behind them.

Correct Grouse is an allred sister of red and white Harry, one of the best allround working ones we had here.

Lineage doubled up suggests main lines of descent are involved. If that is the case, a big part of the working fraternity could be at risk.


You are right. Harry is now dead I think, but it would be a very good thing to get some of his progeny tested for rcd4, in case any of them could be carriers. If they are , we need to make sure it doesnt start to spread in the breed. And it certainly makes me even more convinced we must test any reds used in the outcross for rcd4


As for your last question, Margaret, those involved in the Netherlands can be fully aware of the possible dangers. I e-mailed the result directly after arival to those involved including the owner of the dog you mention. And as written, for Thomas every possible test was done, this dog was not (yet) bred from.
I am really grateful that you flagged up this result, Henk. Otherwise the possible implications for IRWS could have passed completely unnoticed

I suppose as this is an identified single gene problem with a test available the project of outcross could still go ahead? I suppose it all depends on what the alternatives are...

Susan , rcd4 wont stop the outcross going ahead, but it will probably mean that any dogs used in the outcross ought  to be tested. We have somebody from Ireland who is a member of the IKC Outcross Committee who is on Exclusively setters who can tell you more

Mel, I have a foot in both camps , working and showing, so can see both sides. it isnt a simple divide between the show people who conscientiously test their breeding and working people who dont
In some  ways, people with working dogs are MORE health conscious than people with show dogs (yes, sweeping generalisation) , but the concern about health manifests itself in different ways. The working dog has to be  fit and healthy enough to carry out its function , and any health problem that gets in the way of doing the job needs to be eliminated. One doesnt want to put two or three years work into training a setter , then finding the dog isnt fit to do the job, or has only a short life expectation. Therefore breeders have a vested interest in breeding from healthy dogs and removing ones with health problems from their working and breeding stock. They use their eyes and common sense about this at least as much as testing.

Working setters tend to be less inbred than show setters, which doesnt mean they dont carry the genes for the same conditions as show setters, but affected dogs are likely to show up less often


With hip dysplasia, the old myth that working dogs dont have HD has largely disappeared, and I think most people now accept working setters can also have HD, even though it may not be visibly evident in a fit, well muscled dog whose hips are held in place by muscle!


There is  more aversion to close inbreeding in working gundogs, and also the pressure to produce physical clones of successful winning dogs, as in the show world, doesnt exist. If one breeds best to best in the field trial world, one may be  breeding unrelated dogs, and they dont necessarily need to be very similar in physical type

But more of the working /FT setter owners are coming round to making use of testing available, if you start checking published results there are more working setters listed than you might think. In the UK, all Irish setters have to be CLAD and PRA free so all the dogs are tested. And in some European countries (Scandinavia and the German speaking countries) there is as much testing of working setters as there is in show setters

Even in Ireland, there is more testing going on than maybe apparent because at the moment they dont  list their test results anywhere. Breeders like Trudy have been testing their Irish Setters for two decades!

The IRWS breed club in Ireland had a drive to get their working dogs CLAD tested and hip scored a few years ago, and pretty well all the breeding stock in IRWS were CLAD . tested . They also got most of the breeding stock eye tested although not under the BVA scheme, so not recorded


The IRWS breed club have been asking the IKC to start putting test results and hereditary status of parents on the registration documents, and I think this has been promised by the IKC? Dont know when it it will start happening

Anyway, one shouldnt assume that owners of working dogs dont test for anything, they may have been slower to start doing it than owners of show dogs, but it is happening more




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