Eye Research

The research on hereditary eye diseases.

Both adult dogs and our puppies are tested for hereditary eye diseases. (Photo K-litter)

Dr. A. Verbruggen – Ophthalmology Specialist, Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Ophthalmology.

Many breed clubs make a research on hereditary eye diseases mandatory for dogs that are bred. There are many breeders who carried out the research, even if it is not the breed is mandatory. The eye is at various locations in the Netherlands conducted by a number of vets who together form the Dutch ECVO Oogpanel. This panel by the European College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists (www.ecvo.org) recognized. The registration of the results is the responsibility of the Management Board on canine area.

How does the eye recearch go ?
The entire order to be able to see eye drops so that the pupil opening stand. The drops work after about 20 minutes, then the pupil will remain wide approximately 4 hours. The dog is viewed in a darkened room. Before the study, the “eye examination report ‘completed and signed by the owner / holder, with which it consents to its release by giving the Board of Directors. The Council gives the results by the Breed Club for a match between these two parties. Also, for the purpose of identification (transponder or tattoo) of the dog checked. The eye exam is done without roesje and is certainly not painful. The result is known and equal to the “eye examination report” mentioned.

Which hereditary eye diseases are being tested ?
■ Membrane Pupillary Persistens (MPP) – blood vessel leftovers from before birth.
■ Persistent hyperplastic tunica vasculosa lentis / primary vitreous (PHTVL / PHPV) – Lensdeviation
■ Cataract (congenital) – congenital cataracts.
■ Retinal Dysplasia (RD) – congenital retinal abnormality.
■ Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA) – congenital abnormality of the retina.
■ Entropion – a deviation in which a eyelid (usually the lower eyelid) turns inwards.
■ Distichiasis / Ectopic Cilie – This is abnormal hair growth in the eyelid margin.
■ Cataract (non-congenital) – cataract
■ (Primary) lens luxation – This is the release of the lens.
■ Retinal Degeneration and Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA). Group of retinal disorders.

Drs. A. Heijn – Vet, specialist ophthalmologists, Diplomate European College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists.

Significance of the results.
“Free”: the animal shows no signs of the above, regarded as hereditary eye disease.
“Not free”: the animal shows clinical signs of hereditary eye disease.
“Undecided”: very small defects.
“For now not free”: Small deviations in the appropriate clinical picture of the regarded as hereditary eye disease.

At what age should a dog be investigated ?
The Border Collie can be tested for CEA, MPP, PHTVL / PHPV and retinal dysplasia from placing the chip by the Kennelclub, in which case the whole litter is tested.

Why a yearly examination ?
Some abnormalities (eg lens luxation, cataracts, PRA) occurs only after several years. A single test is not sufficient, the deviation can indeed reveal even later. Some breed clubs find a two years adequate evaluation sufficient.

Until what age should a dog be investigated ?
At the Border Collie that is determined by BCCN.

Source: Veterinary Specialists Oisterwijk / Animal Hospital Visdonk Roosendaal