NLDA Forum for Working Lacy Dogs

cleft palate
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Author:  Betty L. [ Wed Nov 30, 2011 10:15 pm ]
Post subject:  cleft palate

Starting a new thread here so that the color genetics thread can get back to what it was intended to be.

The last person that I visited with about cleft palate was a professor in genetics at TAMU vet school. This was last summer. I asked him about the genetics of cleft palate and his response was that they suspected that cleft palate was genetic, but they did not know for sure yet. I have contacted another professor in genetics at TAMU and I will post what he has to say when I hear back from him.

Here is the first website that comes up when you search for cleft palate in dogs: please note that if you go to these websites and look, some of the pictures are not pretty.
Risk Factors:
Purebred dogs and cats have a higher incidence of cleft palate, and brachycephalic breeds, with their short stubby faces, are most commonly affected (Figure 3). Cleft palates may occur more commonly in Boston terriers, Pekingese, bulldogs, miniature schnauzers, beagles, cocker spaniels, dachshunds, and Siamese cats. Although heredity is considered the primary cause of this problem, nutritional deficiencies, viruses, and poisons that affect the mother during pregnancy may also increase the risk of cleft palates in developing puppies and kittens.

From the Merck Veterinary Manual:
In small animals, incidence is higher in Beagles, Cocker Spaniels, Dachshunds, German Shepherds, Labrador Retrievers, Schnauzers, Shetland Sheepdogs, and Siamese cats. Brachycephalic breeds can have up to a 30% risk factor. In large animals, cleft palate/lip complex has been reported in cattle, sheep, goats, and horses. The primary etiology is hereditary, although maternal nutritional deficiencies, drug or chemical exposure, mechanical interferences with the fetus, and some viral infections during pregnancy have also been implicated.

studies done on cleft palate: some of these I understand and some I dont completely.


Author:  colbymmiller [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 1:23 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

Betty, I called my Vet and he went to Texas A&M Vet school and pulled out his book that the Prof at TAMU wrote and it states that cleft palate is hereditary and genetic, BUT can also be due to other exposures, BUT after talking to the vet he did state that if you were to breed a dog that DOES have cleft palate that there is a very HIGH possibility that the gene would be in the pups. Therefore, the pups would pass the gene on to their pups and so on and so forth. He said you might not see cleft palate in the pups of every litter, but there would be pups with the genetic disease if breed often. The pups that now have been sold are now carrying the gene which could be transferred to the next generation and the next and the next etc.. His recommendation was not to breed the male dog ( I did not mention names it was all confidential). He also stated there is no such test to test the specific gene BECAUSE it would cost 10s of thousands of dollars for the test and it is not a test that would be used very often. He also stated it is almost IMPOSSIBLE to test for Specific genes, even though it has been done it is very difficult to do. I did not display the names of the Vet because I did not ask permission, but if you wish to speak to him betty pm or email me and I will get you lined up to speak with him. Also did not reference the name of the prof because I forgot what he told me. :)) bad memory. He also referenced the book when He calls back I will get the book name and the Prof.

Author:  Betty L. [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 3:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

I may have, indeed, caused many pups to have the cleft palate gene. If that is what you want me to admit to, Colby, then I admit it. I had reservations about it, but, I did it.

If he is a genetic cleft palate, then he got the gene from somewhere, either his mother, or his father. Since there is no test for it, then we have no way of knowing that the father, mother or even Abe has it. The father is still being bred. Lucy is fixed, but she does have pups out there that might have the gene and are being bred. Perhaps I should have never bred Lucy after she had the first litter with a cleft palate in it. Thru that, I also may have put more cleft palate pups on the ground.

However, since there is no test for cleft palate and not one in the near future, I may also have a dog that has cleft palate for some other reason. Maybe, maybe not, we will never know.

Out of the 3 Lacys that I have, Abe is by far the best. When I am being criticized for breeding a dog that might have a genetic flaw, then they should also remember that Abe embodies what many people are looking for in a Lacy. I have been asked more than once to breed Abe because of his looks and his prey drive. So, if I have put out genes that are bad, I have also put out some that are darn good.

As I said, I have contacted a genetics professor at TAMU. I will report what he has to say. He may well tell me the same as the vet. But, what ever he says, I will post here, cause it's important to me.


Author:  colbymmiller [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 5:46 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

The Vet that went to TAMU had stated that if the dog did have cleft palate then he DID infact have the gene. For the dog to have cleft palate like Abe he has to have the gene.Period. Now with that being said the Doctors name that wrote the book on animal surgery's and talks about cleft palate is Dr. Fossum who also a TAMU prof. that is highly reconized and wrote many books. I just don't think it is ethical or not as Camo said just because a dog is jam up, if he does not meet standard or owners personel standards then he or she should not be bred. I don't think it does any justice for the breed to allow a dog with a genetic disease, jam up dog or not, the dog should not be bred. Like I stated before that is IMO.

Author:  Betty L. [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 7:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

Well, then, I guess it's all been said. I screwed up when I bred Abe. So, should I go and kill all the dogs that came out of the breeding? I have admitted that perhaps I made a mistake and the argument goes on. But, I am thru. I cant eat crow any more than I have.

My professor at TAMU told me that he was not an expert on cleft palate, but gave me his opinion, but that doesnt matter now. The man who wrote the book is right and I am wrong.


Author:  Fred R. [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 8:13 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

Lucy's sister never produced any cleft palate pups...maybe it came from the sire?????

Author:  jmc243 [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 8:48 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

I have dogs from both sisters (Lucy and Renya's Ria) and neither have Cleft Palate's and both seem to be very healthy

Author:  Bluedog [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 8:52 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

my hounds are cleft palate.....

Author:  Bluedog [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 9:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

Openly discussing a genetics issue for a breeder is generally the kiss of death. If all breeders would do it then things would be different but they dont and wont. I have been around hounds all my life, with many breeds and quite simply breeders will not discuss this sort of stuff. It goes to their credibility within the dog community and it will financially ruin them therefore its tabu.

When I first started previewing the lacy breed 5-6 years ago on the only website for lacys it was said quite often that this breed was free from genetic issues, which I thought was bunk at the time but was being said nontheless. Since then several different things have come out. So much for the theory of no genetic defects. However no breeder has ever come out and said my kennel has this or that. Refer to paragraph one.

I commend Betty Leek for having the courage to talk about this stuff. I for one would have no issues getting another hound from her if she ever decides to breed litters again. I look at it this way, the more information I have on the breeding the better I can be when I decide to breed my hounds. Betty will tell you everything she knows about her hounds, the good and bad, what a concept. We can only wish all breeders would be that forth coming.

Betty is one of the most honest people I have ever met and I am proud to call her my friend....

Author:  Betty L. [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 9:16 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

Thank you, Kevin.


Author:  jmc243 [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 9:18 pm ]
Post subject:  !

Amen.... I second that Kevin.... Betty is one of the most upfront breeders I have ever meet with any breed, her ethical standards, honesty and charactor is of the highest of standards in my book, I wish every Lacy was of the same standard of what my dog from Betty has proven to be!

Author:  Betty L. [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 10:04 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

Thank you too, Joe.

I do always try to do the right thing. I dont always succeed, but I do try.


Author:  colbymmiller [ Thu Dec 01, 2011 11:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

I think there is a mis understanding. I never said Betty has a terrible kennel I just stated I did not agree with that breeding. Either way it is over and done now just wanted to state my opinion is that not what the nlda was designed for

Author:  Betty L. [ Fri Dec 02, 2011 12:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate


You are 100% right in saying that you stating your opinion is what the NLDA is all about. The fact that you are here still here is what the NLDA is all about. Being a part of the NLDA doesnt mean that we dont get mad at each other and that we dont have differences of opinions. What it does mean is that you are allowed to question something and others are allowed to take up for something. You are not going to be ostracized for your opinion and will be allowed to voice your opinion again. I voiced my opinion about a breeding situation a while back and made some people mad, but we are all still here talking and getting along.

One more thing I am going to say, then I will shut up.

If you have a dog that came from the breeding of Abe - you do not have a cleft palate dog. A cleft palate is a physical deformity- it is there from birth. If it's not there, then the dog is not cleft palate. If you have a dog from the breeding of Abe, you have a dog that when bred to another dog- MIGHT- produce a puppy with cleft palate. There is a very large difference. The cleft palate is not something that is going to show up further down the line. It's not a disease, but a birth defect.

If you have a dog that came from that breeding and want a different dog- then I will be happy to buy the dog for what you paid for it and place it in a home where the people will be completely enlightened about the situation. I'm also sure that the breeder would say the same thing.


Author:  Bluedog [ Fri Dec 02, 2011 2:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: cleft palate

Colby, I wasnt implying that you said Bettys kennel was not what it should be. Part of the point I was attempting to make was that as a general rule no breeder will ever admit what Betty did. Therefore, there are many breeders still active not being completely open about the goings on within their kennel. Not only in the lacy dog world but the dog world.

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