Once again, the SDCA Health & Genetics Committee will be sponsoring health testing and sample collection for research at the 2024 National Specialty in Logan, Utah, May 21–25.

Here is what we have planned:

Health Testing

Cardiac Testing: Echocardiograms with cardiologist Meg Sleeper, VMD, DACVIM (cardiology), our consulting cardiologist for the SDCA Holter StudyWednesday, May 22 (afternoon) and Thursday, May 23 (all day).

Please note: This clinic will be opened to the public on April 15, so reserve your spot early to avoid disappointment.

Cost: $275; dogs that tested normal in the Holter study are $250.

This testing is part of the SDCA Code of Ethics Health Guidelines.

Appointments: Pre-registration is required; to pre-register, simply pay for your echo in The SDCA Store. Appointments will be offered in registration order, so register early! Scheduling information will be provided via email.

OFA Eye Clinic with ophthalmologist (and SDCA member) Michael Blair, DVM, MS, Rph, DACVO – Thursday, May 23, 3:30-5:00 P.M.

Genetic eye abnormalities are considered rare in Deerhounds; however, we have very limited data. The best way to prevent problems is to be vigilant and screen for potentially genetic mutations in any breeding stock. We are also extremely lucky to have a club member — Dr. Michael Blair — who is a board-certified veterinary ophthalmologist, so we want to take him up on his very kind offer to do eye clinics to make sure our Deerhounds’ eyes are as healthy as they are beautiful. The testing is easy on your dog — just some eye drops and a quick exam. We are offering a limited number of eye exams, so sign up early to avoid disappointment.

Cost: Free!

Pre-registration is required; registration and appointment information will be provided in April.

DEPOHGENTM Testing*: We will be doing cheek swab sampling at the cheek swab/blood draw clinic on Saturday, May 25, after the judging, to send to Washington State University to test for Delayed Post-Operative Hemorrhage (DEPOH, formerly Delayed Bleeding Syndrome or hyperfibrinolysis) and to support Dr. Michael Court’s research into Slow Drug Metabolism and Hyperthermia. We will also accept swabs from people who test their dogs at home.

Cost: $30. The SDCA Health Fund will be subsidizing $35 of the $65 fee.

This testing is part of the SDCA Code of Ethics Health Guidelines.

Whether you are having your dog swabbed at the show or bringing swabs from dogs left at home, pre-registration is required; to pre-register, simply pay for your tests in the SDCA Store. Scheduling information will be provided via email.

NOTE: If you submitted cheek swabs from your dog previously for Dr. Court’s research, those test results are valid and you do NOT need to retest your dog.

*As part of the patent agreement between WSU and the SDCA, a small royalty from DEPOHGEN™ test sales will be returned to the SDCA.

Factor VII Testing: Once again, we will be offering blood draws for Factor VII testing at the University of Pennsylvania at our cheek swab/blood draw clinic on Saturday, May 25, after the judging.

Cost: $30. The SDCA Health Fund will again be subsidizing $45 of the $75 fee.

This testing is part of the SDCA Code of Ethics Health Guidelines.

NEW!!! Pre-registration is required; to pre-register, simply pay for your tests in the SDCA Store. Scheduling information, as well as information on completing the PennGen form, which is required, will be provided via email in April.

Research Sample Collection

CHIC DNA Bank: We will be drawing blood samples for submission to our CHIC DNA Bank at our cheek swab/blood draw clinic on Saturday, May 25, after the judging. The bank is already being used by researchers, and the more samples we get, the more useful it will be. Registration information will be provided in April.

Cost: FREE! The SDCA Health Fund and OFA underwrite the $20 processing cost.

If you need a DNA sample on your dog in order to participate in the SDCA Holter Study, the specialty blood draw clinic is the perfect way to get it done! You can bring samples from dogs at home, too!

Cystinuria Study: We will be drawing blood for DNA and accepting urine samples for cystinuria testing to support our cystinuria research at our cheek swab/blood draw clinic on Saturday, May 25, after the judging.  This year, we would like samples from both intact dogs and a few bitches age 2 and over. Even if your dog has had NP tests before, multiple tests are very useful for the research, so please test your dog again. Urine collection equipment will be available.

Cost: FREE (Penn and the SDCA Health Fund subsidize the $55 fee) as long as a blood sample is also provided or Penn already has a blood sample from your dog.

Pre-registration on the PennGen website is required. Directions will be provided in April.

Please note: By submitting samples for research, you agree to provide written health updates on your dog every two or three years when requested by the SDCA up to and including the age and cause of death.

Blood Draw Clinic Appointments: You will be able to schedule appointments starting about a month before the show. We’ll provide form information as the show gets closer.

For all of the clinics, walk-in appointments may be available on a limited basis but are not guaranteed.

Bringing Samples from Home

Feel free to bring cheek swabs, blood, and urine to the show from dogs that you are leaving at home. Detailed instructions will be provided in April. For DEPOHGEN™ and Factor VII testing, pay for your tests in the SDCA store. To bring samples from home, select “Test at Home” from the drop-down menu.

If you have any questions about the sample collection or health testing, please don’t hesitate to ask.

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! There are a variety of jobs that need to be filled. If you can spare an hour or two to help at a health clinic, please let us know!