We have added quite a lot of health data to the database. These are public records containing results from screening programs. We are making progress in opening up for user-submitted data, but aren’t quite there yet.

Types of data

Most of the screening results fall into one of four categories:

  • Hips or Hip Dysplasia (HD)
  • Elbows or Elbow Dysplasia (ED)
  • Heart/Cardiac
  • Eyes

In addition there is some data on Patella Luxation (PL), Spondylosis, Thyroid levels, and some other problems, but the bulk of our data fall into one of the top categories.

Hips and Hip Dysplasia

There are numerous ways to annotate data on hip dysplasia. If the result is seen as a single letter, it’s the worst grade of the two hip joints. The scale is as follows:

  • A: No signs of Hip Dysplasia
  • B: Near Normal Hip Joints
  • C: Mild Hip Dysplasia
  • D: Moderate Hip Dysplasia
  • E:  Severe Hip Dysplasia

This scoring-system is used throughout most FCI-countries. However, in the US, Canada, Switzerland, UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand other systems are used. The US and Canada use the OFA-scoring mode, whereas the UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand use what’s called the BVA/KC-scoring mode. In Germany a more finetuned version of the FCI-system is used. You may read more on these different scoring modes in this excellent article.

For comparision, we’ve put together the following table:

FCIUK, AU, NZSwitzerlandUSA (OFA)
A0-30-2Excellent and Good
B4-83-6Good and Fair
C9-187-12Borderline and mild
D>1813-18Moderate
E>1819-24Severe

In some older screening systems, the grade NR is also recorded, meaning No Remark, which would be similar to A or Excellent.

Elbows and Elbow Dysplasia

For elbows and elbow dysplasia, systems have become much more standardised over the last few years. While Elbow Dysplasia can mean a number of different things, the systems used throughout the world grades elbow dysplasia according to this:

  • Grade 0 = normal elbows (no enthesophyte formation)
  • Grade 1 = Mild ED (<2mm thickness of new bone formation)
  • Grade 2 = Moderate ED or a primary lesion (2mm to <5 mm of new bone)
  • Grade 3 = Severe ED (5+ mm of new bone formation or ununited anconeal process)

Some countries will grade both elbows separately. You will then see scores for each elbow (0/1 for example), while others only list the worst elbow without further information (2 for example). You may occasionally see NR used on older elbow-tests as well. That means No Remark, transforming to grade 0.

The Orthopedic Foundation For Animals has an excellent article on Elbow Dysplasia here  which also explains terms used.

Heart and Cardiac

While there are established systems in place for hips and elbows, the territory for heart problems and the cardiac system is more unclear. First off, there’s numerous ways to examine a canine heart. Most breed bodies recommend a composite check, consisting of ausculation, ElectroCardioGram (ECG) and EchoCardioGram (Cardiac Ultrasound). There are several methods to evaluate these results. There’s some consensus across Europe to use the Vollmar-protocol for evaluating results, except for Great Britain where a separate UK-scheme is used. In the US, the screening results recorded by OFA are more varied, but to our knowledge, full tests are done when results are marked with Cardiologist, Echo.

Most screening programs will use a 3-step grading:

  • Normal
  • Abnormal
  • Equivocal

The Irish Wolfhound Health Group has an excellent article on heart disease in the Irish Wolfhound on their website.

Eyes

You will know there are a number of eye diseases that can affect a dog. The screening result will display what disease (if any) was found. For checks of type Eyes (CERT) and a result which is a number, the number indicates which year the eyes were certified to be fine. If there are any remarks here, they will explain what was wrong.