THE KENNEL Club has made changes to requirements under its Assured Breeder Scheme. Eye testing for all relevant breeds must now be carried out within 18 months of the birth of the litter rather than of its registration of a litter.
This became effective on July 1.
The term ‘eye testing’ has been changed to ‘annual eye testing’ to fall in line with the advice issued to breeders by the British Veterinary Association.
Breed-specific changes have also been made, to which breeders have six months to comply:
Bichon Frisé – add requirement ‘Annual eye testing’;
Cavalier – change wording of recommendation from ‘breed club – advice re syringomyelia’ to ‘BVA/KC CM/SM syringomyelia test’;
Cirneco Dell‘Etna – add recommendations, ‘No bitch to be mated under the age of two years’ and, ‘No stud dog to be used on a bitch under two years old’;
Great Dane – change hip scoring from a requirement to a recommendation;
Irish Setter – add recommendation, ‘Bitches under two years not to produce a litter’;
Irish Wolfhound – change wording of recommendation, ‘Breed club – liver shunt testing’ to ‘Breed club – liver shunt testing of all puppies prior to being sold’.
The KC said the changes had been introduced following extensive consultations with breed clubs and councils.
"The reason for the change to the eye testing time frame is to encourage breeders to carry out eye tests prior to any mating taking place,” said the KC’s health and breeder services manager Bill Lambert.
"Assured Breeders should take notice of these results and of course it is best practice to carry out matings only in the full knowledge of a breeding pair’s current eye status.”
The next set of changes will be announced in the new year, and if breed clubs and councils want to make a proposal they should be sent to the Assured Breeder Scheme, the Kennel Club, 1-5 Clarges Street, London W1J 8AB.
An updated list of all requirements and recommendations can be found at www.assuredbreeders.org.uk.