There have been a couple of reports this year of health problems that have never previously occurred in Otterhounds, so for the time being I am going to file that information away and keep watch on it to see if anything the same or similar occurs in the future.

    This year I want to concentrate on Glanzmann’s Thrombasthenia, In brief Thrombasthenic thrombopathia is a bleeding disorder first described in Otterhounds in America in 1967, caused by minimal platelet aggregation response and impaired clot retraction resulting in mucosal bleeding and prolonged bleeding times. Diagnostic screening was used to select against this condition in the 1970s and 1980s with much success, but in the early 1990s platelet dysfunction was encountered again in descendants of those originally affected. Molecular studies determined that the disease is caused by a substitution mutation (G→C) in exon 12 of the platelet glycoprotein IIb gene and is phenotypically homologous to Glanzmann’s Thrombasthenia (PMID 11703027, DOI: 10.2460/ajvr.2001.62.1797). A DNA test for the mutation causing Glanzmann’s Thrombasthenia in Otterhounds is available from multiple commercial test providers (PawPrint Genetics, VHL, VetGen) as well as Aubon University in the USA, where the research was carried out.

    Unfortunately I do need to introduce a personal note here as many of you will know that I have introduced American blood into our gene pool in 1997 and have brought in another hound that I hope to breed from in the future. I just wish to reassure you all that Texas, Indiana and Willfull have all been tested clear at Aubon University and their Certificates will be made available to anyone who wishes to see them.

    I do have a long and complicated article on the condition called ‘The Molecular and genetic basis for thrombasthenic thrombopathia in Otterhounds’ and I will be happy to email this to anybody who wishes to have information on this in greater depth.

    Along with your Health Committee and the Club Committee I am working with the Kennel Club to find a way of preventing this condition from entering the Gene pool in the UK and making our work to keep our hounds healthy and therefore happy inestimably more difficult. As soon as this action has been defined I will, of course, inform everyone via all the available platforms so everyone knows what action they will need to take.

    Judith Ashworth - Kennel Club Breed Health Co-Ordinator.
    The Otterhound Club Health Committee

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