1. Freedom from hunger and thirst
2. Freedom from discomfort
3. Freedom from pain, injury and disease
4. Freedom to express normal behaviour
5. Freedom from fear and distress
All of the above are controlled by us, the pets’ owner. In the case of Number 3, we all try to avoid accidents and incidents as much as possible. However, as with humans and other species, many health issues are caused through breeding. In the last thirty years, huge leaps have been made in DNA testing for diseases. This means that now, in many cases, we can avoid several genetic predispositions that have previously affected our animals, often without our knowledge. Compared to many canine breeds, the Scottish Deerhound suffers from few recognized health or genetic problems.
One genetic test that can be carried out on the Scottish Deerhound is for Factor VII deficiency. Factor VII deficiency is, on the whole, rarely a serious problem. Factor VII deficiency is an autosomal recessive trait associated with a mild to moderate bleeding. An affected dog that is injured with a serious wound or that under goes surgery may not be able to form blood clots to prevent excessive bleeding.
Factor VII deficiency in the deerhound is determined by one gene only. Each dog has 2 copies of this gene, one from each parent. A dog affected by FVIID will have 2 abnormal copies of the relevant gene. A carrier of FVIID will have one abnormal and one normal copy but cannot be FVII deficient because the normal gene is dominant. A carrier however can pass the abnormal gene to its offspring.
For more information about FVIID please refer to the very informative article “Inherited Factor VII Deficiency in the Deerhound” written by Sue Finnett and Hector Heathcote
All our hounds have been tested for Factor VII deficiency.
We are also proud to be Foundation Members of the NZ Kennel Club's Accredited Breeders Scheme.