Episodic Falling in the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Episodic falling is a neurological condition, induced by exercise, excitement or frustration, in which muscle tone increases. This means the dog is unable to relax its muscles, becomes rigid and falls over. Affected dogs usually start to demonstrate clinical signs before one year of age, with most cases having their first episode aged four to seven months.
Early in 2011 Geneticists at the Animal Health Trust identified a recessive mutation associated with Episodic Falling. Episodic Falling syndrome is often difficult to diagnose as the syndrome can show similarities to other neurological conditions, such as epilepsy. A DNA test was developed to provide a useful diagnostic tool to the veterinary profession and dog breeders and has been available from the Animal Health Trust since 18 April 2011.
Breeders using the test will be sent results identifying their dog as belonging to one of three categories:
CLEAR: these dogs have two normal copies of DNA. Clear dogs will not develop EF as a result of the identified mutation. We cannot exclude the possibility that some dogs may show some clinical signs similar to those of EF but due to a different genetic or clinical cause.
CARRIER: these dogs have one copy of the mutation and one normal copy of DNA. These dogs will not develop EF themselves but they will pass the mutation on to approximately 50% of their offspring. We cannot exclude the possibility that some dogs may show some clinical signs similar to those of EF but due to a different genetic or clinical cause.
AFFECTED: these dogs have two copies of the EF associated mutation and are likely to present clinical signs of EF during their lifetime, with an age of onset of around 4-7 months. EF is a highly variable condition. Our research indicates that some dogs with the EF associated mutation will not show clinical signs of EF.
Tests should be ordered from our online webshop
Enquiries should be made to Symone Ingram telephone +44 (0) 1638 555621 or fax +44 (0) 1638 555666 or via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.