Health Tests

Every Schapendoes used in breeding needs to have 2 eye examinations.

  1. The ECVO-examination which is valid for 12 months.
  2. The PRA Genetest which only needs to be done once.

ECVO EYE TEST

Detailled information on the ECVO (European College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists) eye test and especially about the rules for it can be found at the ECVO site and at your national kennelclub.

GPRA GENE TEST

Direct gene test for gPRA available for the Schapendoes

The mutation responsible for PRA (progressive retina atrophy) in the Schapendoes was found some time ago. Biofocus LADR Gesellschaft für biologische Analytik mbH in Recklinghausen performs this test. Biofocus passes on the test results of all Schapendoes tested to the Schapendoes breed associations. The diagnostics are nearly 100% accurate. For breeding purposes heterogeneous individuals (carriers +-), normally healthy genotypes (homozygous ++) and affected animals (homozygous mutant -) can be reliably distinguished. The bill for the examination will be sent to you together with the results. Biofocus also offers the possibility to simultaneously request a DNA profile in addition to the gPRA test. In these links you will find a research form that you can fill in (English or German).

OrderformgPRA-eng

OrderformgPRA-de

Submit the form to your vet. The vet will use a chip reader scan your dog’s microchip to check whether the chip number matches the number on the pedigree of the dog offered for the test. For a good result it is preferable to do the test with blood samples. For this purpose please send 3 EDTA tubes of blood, preferably 3 ml per tube (if you do not succeed in taking as much blood, then 4 samples of 2ml each or, if necessary, 3 x2 ml). Each tube should be labelled with the chip number and the name of the dog. If you do not succeed in taking blood, you can also send in at least 2 swabs. The samples do not need to be cooled, but must be sent immediately. The tubes must be well packed to prevent breakage (envelope covered with plastic bubble wrap). Please have the blood taken at the beginning of the week, so that there is no weekend between shipping and receipt.

Please send along:

  • A copy of the pedigree.
  • A copy of the most recent ECVO test, if available
  • The completed and signed form.

 Send by “Priority mail” to:

LADR Biofocus, Berghäuser Strasse 295, D-45659 Recklinghausen, Germany.

Why blood and no swabs like in the past?

The previous laboratory Bochum has stored the DNA of all the dogs they tested in a DNA bank since the beginning of the research into gPRA. This DNA is available for possible further research, but for future research for any other abnormalities in the Schapendoes these are less suitable than full blood. Therefore, in addition to the gPRA test, the current Biofocus lab also offers the opportunity to store the sent blood of all dogs tested by Biofocus in a blood bank (costs included in the test price). With this blood, more sophisticated research can be done for other possible hereditary abnormalities. Blood does not only contain the DNA of the dog, but also many other substances, which can provide information for future research. In order to do detailed research, a lot of DNA is needed.

 With swabs there is a risk that there is not enough mucous membrane tissue or that the swabs become infected by, for example, fungus or during collection by touching the fingers. In that case, there is too little cellular material available and insufficient DNA can be isolated. As a result, it may become impossible to perform the test and a new sample collection and new test (with associated costs) will be necessary.