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  • Health

    The information below is only a guide and has been compiled from external sources. Breeders and owners need to research and develop their own program…

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  • Breeders

    Welcome to the Breeders Directory Below is a list of AWBCR breeders. While all these breeders are members of the AWBCR we strongly suggest that…

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Basic Dog Health

The information below is only a guide and has been compiled from external sources. Breeders and owners need to research and develop their own program to suit their individual needs.

Nutrition

Puppies from weaning up to 4 months of age should be fed three times a day. Two meals are preferred after 4 months of age. A premium quality puppy food should be fed until 12 months of age, and then changed to a reputable adult food. Raw meat and meaty bone and/or raw hide chew should also be offered on regular bases to keep their teeth clean. Access to clean fresh water is essential.

Vaccinations

Dogs are vaccinated against Parvovirus, Distemper and Canine Infectious Hepatitis. The first is at 6-8 weeks, the second at 10-12 weeks, and then the third at 16 weeks of age. Adult dogs then have annual booster vaccinations. If you have an unvaccinated older dog or have missed a vaccination in a few years, then two vaccinations a month apart should be given, followed by annual booster vaccinations.

Dogs can also be vaccinated against Bordertella and Para influenza, the cause of Canine Cough. Although not fatal compared to the other viruses, it can cause a very severe cough which may lead to permanent damage to the windpipe. Puppies are vaccinated for Canine Cough at their third vaccinations, then annually.

Intestinal Worming

Intestinal worming should be done at 2, 4, 6 and 8 weeks of age, then once a month until 6 months of age then every 3 months for the rest of the dog's life.

Heartworm

Heartworm prevention should start before 6 months of age. Prevention can be done with monthly heartworm tablets or a heartworm injection given at 6 months of age. The second injection is given at 15 months of age (to coincide with the annual booster vaccination) and continues once a year.

Flea Control

There are numerous products for flea control, including tablets, washes and spot on. Flea control is generally done once a month with either a spot on applied on the back of the neck or via tablet. These products are superior to flea shampoos and flea collars products from the supermarket.

Hereditary Diseases

Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA) CEA is a congenital disorder where the parts of the eye, particularly the retinal area, do not develop normally. The severity of the disease ranges from no visual impairment to blindness. It is not a progressive disease and affected dogs usually have only mildly impaired vision.

This disease is straightforward in both its inheritance patterns and in our ability to control it. CEA is an autosomal recessive disorder. Autosomal means it is passed on and expressed equally in males or females. Recessive means a dog may carry a bad (mutated) CEA gene and pass it on to its offspring without having the disease itself. A dog is defined as Clear (or Normal) if it has no bad CEA genes. A dog is defined as a Carrier if it has one ba

Trapped Neutrophil Syndrome

(TNS) is an hereditary disease where the bone marrow produces neutrophils (white cells) but is unable to effectively release them into the bloodstream. Affected puppies have an impaired immune system and will eventually die from infections they cannot fight.
Once thought to be rare, it is now believed that the disease goes undiagnosed for several reasons. First, not very many veterinarians know about the disease to look for it. Second, even when looking, blood counts do not always show lower than normal neutrophil (white blood cell) counts. Finally, because it is an autoimmune-deficiency disease, young puppies present a variety of symptoms depending upon what infections they fall prone to. Thus many cases are not properly diagnosed and have just been thought to be fading puppies.

Making the diagnosis even more difficult is the fact that age of onset varies depending on which infection is involved at the time. Most puppies become ill before leaving the breeder but some do not have symptoms until later. The oldest known survivor was 2 years 8 months. Most affected puppies die or are euthanized by about 4 months of age.

The research now suggests that the gene is widespread throughout the Border Collie breed, TNS cases have been positively diagnosed in Australia, Great Britain, Hungary, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and the United States. The gene is autosomal recessive, which means that both parents have to be carriers to produce an affected puppy.
You can use the above table from the CEA description as a guide and a DNA test is available through Sydney University.

Hip Dysplasia (HD)

HD is a genetic disease that affects Border Collies. Factors that contribute to the development of HD ultimately cause the hip joint to be damaged. Joint damage called osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease (DJD). DJD is manifested by cartilage and bone breakdown and irregular bony remodelling in response to stresses and inflammatory processes in the joint. DJD is, in effect, the identifiable result of factors that cause HD.

Despite what some may claim, data from numerous scientific studies provide overwhelming evidence that HD is an inherited disease. It is thought to be caused by at least three and possibly as many as six primary genes. To confuse matters more, the expression of the disease is affected by environmental conditions such as the type and amount of food a dog gets at critical growth stages, as well as the type and amount of exercise and activity it gets. It must be remembered, however, that these environmental factors do not cause HD. They merely affect whether the HD genes present in that individual will be expressed to the fullest. Even if the expression of HD in a certain individual is suppressed by careful control of environmental factors, you have not changed the dog's genetic makeup. That dog will still pass on the genetic tendency for HD just as if it actually had the disease. Conversely, if a dog does not have the genes for HD, it won't develop the disease no matter how it's raised.