Kooikerhondje Health testing STEP BY STEP:
Susanne Martin, MD
Attention: some attachments have red circles for areas that need particular attention before submission!
Your dog is required to have a permanent ID in form of a tattoo or microchip plus should have a registration number through AKC or FCI.
DNA testing for carrier status of vWD and ENM
(turn around time <2 months; no age restriction as long as the dog is big enough for the blood draw, for example at age 8 weeks)
Send a vial with blood of your dog to Utrecht University with attachment 1
- Take your dog to the vet, let them draw 1-4 cc of blood into an EDTA tube and mix well.
- Send the blood (by US post) through your vet or privately to:
PO Box 85422 3508 AK Utrecht
Tip: label as “Lab sample from healthy animal for routine genetic testing” if you declare as blood.
Attention: if declared as blood, it can cause difficulty with customs!
- Info from VHNK: DNA testing for VWD and ENM at the Veterinarian Clinic of the Utrecht University will take place:
January – March – May – July – September – November (uneven months)
Samples arrived before or on the first day of every test month will be tested. Results usually follow at the end of the month.
Keep in mind that samples can be delayed at the post and therefore results can be published later than expected.
DNA analysis for ENM can be conducted simultaneously with DNA analysis for VWD. When VWD has previously been tested and isolated DNA is stored at Utrecht, sending a test form will be sufficient.
- You will receive the result by mail (attachment 1 will be returned with the result boxes checked indicating your dog being either a carrier or non-carrier) +/- email.
- You will receive a bill by the University and you need to pay by international money transfer or directly or request credit card payment (Account NR: NL61 INGB 0002 2522 32, BIC: INGB NL2A, subject: “Vereniging Het Nederlandse Kooikerhondje”)
- Approximate cost: 130 US$ for both vWD and ENM. The Dutch Kooiker Club (VHNK) does give financial support for these tests if you are a member of the VHNK and the dog tested is going to be breeding stock and older than 12 months.
- Send 2 copies (one vWD, one ENM) of the result from Utrecht plus 2x attachment 2 to the OFA : Orthopedic Foundation for Animals, 2300 E Nifong Blvd, Columbia, MO 65201-3806
- Cost per submitted test: 15 US$; total for both: 30US$
The result will be listed on the OFA website shortly plus you will receive an OFA certificate per each submitted DNA test
Patella exam (age 12 month and older)
- Ask an experienced exhibitor of toy dogs for a recommendation for a vet the requisite expertise
- Take attachment 3 to your vet; he/she will grade the patella stability and should send it into OFA; clarify if your vet sends it in or you!
- Cost: veterinary exam (~40$ depending on your veterinarian) + 15 US$ submission fee to OFA
The result will be listed on the OFA website shortly plus you will receive an OFA certificate
Eye exam (OFA)
- Make an appointment for OFA testing with a certified veterinary ophthalmologist when your dog is 12 months or older OR
Watch for an Eye Clinic at a local dog show; the exam fee is typically half of the cost of going to the office
- Breeding stock can be re-evaluated prior to breeding if the last OFA testing is > 2 years ago; however, this is not required
- The vet will fill out attachment 4 (see below in this text for guideline to fill out) (usually the ophthalmologist has this form ready for you) and he/she submits to CERF; clarify if you need send anything in yourself
- Cost: Total ~ 65US$ (Eye exam: ~ 50US$; Submission: 12 US$)
The result will be listed on the OFA website (they work together with CERF) shortly plus you will receive an OFA certificate
Hip exam for hip dysplasia
- Ask an experienced breeder with Sporting Breeds/large breeds who they recommend in your area for OFA x-rays
- Make an appointment for OFA hip x-ray at 24 months or older
- Dogs younger than 24 months can receive a preliminary hip test; the result will be published on the OFA website only if the dog has a permanent ID, is older than 12 months and the box allowing abnormal results be made public is initialed
- Attachment 5 which will be sent to the OFA by your vet for final evaluation; clarify if your vet is sending it in or if you are!
- Experienced veterinarians do not need sedation for this exam which will be better for your dog and is less expensive
- Costs: Exam: ~ 100-350$; submission to OFA: 35 US$
The result will be listed on the OFA website shortly plus you will receive an OFA certificate PLUS
AFTER COMPLETION OF ALL 5 TESTS (no matter if passing or not), YOUR DOG WILL HAVE AN OFFICIAL CHIC NUMBER AND WILL RECEIVE A SEPARATE CHIC CERTIFICATE AND RESULTS WILL BE LISTED ON THE OFA WEBSITE
Owner must consent to divulge results to the public domain
Attachment 4 guidelines:
Instructions for your veterinarian(s):
Minimum health tests for a Kooikerhondje that might be bred include the following:
- A DNA test for von Willebrand Disease and Hereditary Necrotizing Myelopathy (ENM). Ideally 4 cc’s (at least 1cc) of blood should be collected in an EDTA tube and mixed. The sample needs to be sent for testing to the Veterinary University of Utrecht in The Netherlands. At the current time, please do not encourage testing within the USA. Ideally, the sample should be sent through your office (ideally with tracking number) but the owner can also be the one sending it overseas. Make sure that the microchip number is noted on the vial (besides name, DOB, date of collection).
- Patella exam at or after the dog is 12 months old with OFA paperwork submitted to the OFA. Make sure to check the box to agree to have the results published regardless of the outcome of the test.
- A OFA eye exam at or after the dog is 12 months old and prior to breeding if the last exam was done > 2 years ago. A Kooikerhondje is sensitive to touch and might react unpredictable with dilation of the eye and in a dark environment.
- An OFA hip exam for dysplasia at or after the dog is 24 months old with OFA paperwork submitted to the OFA. A Kooiker is a sensitive dog to voice and touch. It is always ideal to do a hip exam without sedation. However, a Kooiker might be fearful and bite.
The dog owner should be encouraged to report health test results and litter updates to the Dutch Kooikerhondje Club (VHNK). They can do so on their own or send the information to: