Why your dog’s BLOOD is needed - Until the Animal Heath Trust have a LARGE supply of samples from Basset Hounds, no research can be made into developing any DNA tests for the breed.

BLOOD STORE FOR DNA RESEARCH

We are pleased to announce that we have now set up a Blood Store in partnership with the Animal Health Trust (AHT). This is specifically for Basset Hounds, to establish a DNA database, to help research into conditions affecting the breed.
This is a very exciting and important new development for the future of our breed and we would urge all breeders/owners to submit blood samples from their hounds, whatever their age, in order that all Basset Hounds may benefit from this in the future.
It has been agreed that the data obtained from the use of the DNA samples in research is to be employed only for the benefit of dogs.   No commercial organisation, seeking to use the information for other purposes, will be allowed access to any data.  Please support us in this exciting new venture.
On behalf of the Basset Hound Health Group, The Basset Hound Club of Scotland has agreed a protocol with The Animal Health Trust and this is explained below:

1.     The Purpose of the blood store will be to provide DNA samples for research into health conditions affecting Basset Hounds.

2.    It must be recognised that the Research will be a long term project and Owners submit samples in the knowledge that it is the future    of this Breed that will benefit from any 'answers' arising.
3.     DNA samples become the property of the AHT with the proviso that use of the DNA samples and clinical data has to be kept within margins of research programs into canine health issues.

4.     If other research bodies require access to the DNA Samples, then the aims of the research must be put to the Basset Hound Health Group for their agreement for such access to be granted.

5.     The data obtained from the use of the DNA samples, in research, is to be used for the benefit of dogs and not commercial organisations seeking to use the information for other purposes.

6.     All information will be confidential.

7.     The information is given freely and may be used by AHT for research purposes as agreed by The Basset Hound Health Group.

8.      If, after you have submitted your Form to The AHT, your Basset is diagnosed with any condition, please submit a “Follow up Form”.

9.      If your Basset lives to a ripe old age with no health problems whatsoever, The AHT want to know about this too, so please submit a blood sample from your “oldie”....this is just as important as providing a sample from a young dog or a sick dog.

Vets are not allowed to take blood purely for research purposes but they may supply surplus blood for research purposes when taking a sample for something else. So if your dog is undergoing any investigation that involves a blood sample, please ask your vet to keep any surplus blood (min 2ml in an EDTA tube) and submit it to AHT.
Taking samples is quite straightforward and instructions for submission to The Animal Health Trust are detailed below and are on the submission form.   However, please do not post your blood sample on a Friday as the sample could be lying in a warm environment for 2-3 days.

If your dog is undergoing any investigation that involves a blood sample, please ask your vet to keep any surplus blood (2-5ml). Place the surplus blood into an EDTA tube and label it with the following information:

Label each sample accurately with the registered name of the puppy/adult. (If this is unknown or unconfirmed at the time in respect of puppies, put the Kennel Club ID for the puppy and advise the registered name as soon as this is known)
Whether dog or bitch.
Date of Birth.
Date the sample was taken.
IT IS VITAL THAT THE SAMPLES ARE LABELLED CORRECTLY.
Please enclose:

Blood samples (please preserve at least a 2ml blood sample in an EDTA tube)
A three to five generation pedigree of the dog whose sample is enclosed.
All relevant information regarding inherited disease i.e. Heart Disease, Cancer or other including key notes from the dog’s clinical history  (Please speak to your Vet about this).
The form overleaf/attached completed in full.
The above information is necessary for the sample to be used for research purposes. It is also important to inform the AHT of any significant health changes that occur after the sample has been submitted, even if many years have elapsed. There is a separate form for this.

Samples must be sent as soon as possible after being taken (not on a Friday), via first class mail to safeguard the quality of the samples on arrival at AHT.

Wrap your sample well with a thick wad of cotton wool, sellotape it securely and place in an envelope - a padded envelope is ideal.  Blood sample, Sample Submission Form & Pedigrees should be sent First Class to:
The Animal Health Trust, Lanwades Park, Kentford, Newmarket, Suffolk, CB8 7UU.
Please mark the top left hand side of the envelope “DNA Research” and on the reverse of the envelope mark it “by arrangement with The Basset Hound Club of Scotland”.

If you would like any further information or would like some assistance when completing your submission form please contact one of the named Health Representatives below. These Health Representatives have in-depth knowledge about the Scheme and are there to help you.   You can meet them at some of the Shows as well so that you can have a face to face chat if you wish.

The Health Representatives to be contacted are:-

Patricia Wells,
The Midland Basset Hound Club.                           Email.  kortebin@tiscali.co.uk                      Telephone No: 01964 542744
Lauren Armstrong,
The South of England Basset Hound Club.     Email. lauraleebassets@btinternet.com    Telephone No: 01489 885300

Blood samples are required from healthy as well as sick dogs, elderly dogs as well as puppies, dogs as well as bitches. At present only pure bred Basset Hounds are suitable for sample submissions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. My Basset has been DNA profiled by the Kennel Club.  Do I need to provide a further sample?
A. Yes.  Even if your dog has been DNA profiled by the Kennel Club, only The Kennel Club will have a record of this.  To enable the AHT to profile AND archive your dog’s DNA, you will have to complete the appropriate form and send it, with your dog’s pedigree and a Blood Sample or a Buccal swab although a blood sample is preferred.   DNA profiling is primarily used for paternity testing, not to screen for genetic diseases.  DNA profiling describes a different technique that uses differences in DNA inheritance patterns to uniquely identify an animal.  This situation may change through time.

Q. What is a DNA Archive?
A  DNA archive, otherwise known as a DNA bank, is a collection of DNA samples from different individuals that are to be stored to an indefinite period of time.  The DNA is collected with a view to using it for future research purposes, as and when it is needed.

Q. Which dogs should have their DNA stored?
A DNA from any dogs can be stored, but it is especially useful to store DNA from dogs that have or are likely to be bred from and dogs that are known to be closely related to dogs that are affected with inherited conditions.

Q. What can the stored DNA be used for?
A. The stored DNA can be used for a variety of purposes.  One important use for the DNA is to identify mutations responsible for inherited diseases; these diseases can be ones that are known about today or ones that might arise in the future.  During a research project where a causal mutation is being sought it is often useful to analyse the DNA from affected dogs and from their parents and grandparents.  For late onset conditions parents and grandparents may no longer be alive by the time an affected dog is identified, but if the DNA from those dogs had been stored then it will be available to use long after the dogs have passed away.  The AHT has developed at least one DNA test that was made possible by the analysis of DNA from dogs that had been stored for almost 10 years.
Stored DNA can also be used for general breeds studies, such as estimating the genetic diversity of the breed or the frequency of disease mutations in the general population.

Q. How can the DNA be collected?
A. Ideally the DNA would be collected as a blood sample ( 2-5mls) preserved in EDTA.  However, in the UK, the Home Office has strict regulations restricting the drawing of blood for non-veterinary procedures, so owners should discuss this with their vet before requesting a blood sample solely for the purposes of DNA archiving.  If a dog is having blood drawn for a veterinary procedure then a vet is permitted to draw a little bit extra for research purposes (which is how DNA archiving is classified) or to use any residual blood sample that is left over from the veterinary procedure

Q. What information needs to accompany each DNA sample?
A. The more information that accompanies each DNA sample the more useful it is likely to be.  A DNA sample from a dog for which there is little information is unlikely to be of much use.  It is usual to provide details such as the dog’s name, breed, KC registration number, D.O.B., coat colour.  You will also be asked for a copy of the dog’s 5-generation pedigree and for any information about the health of the dog.  Keeping the archive updated with any significant health changes is VERY IMPORTANT.  For example, if we want to use a particular dog’s DNA sample to study a specific inherited condition we need to know the dogs’ clinical status with regard to that disease - in other words, we need to know if the dog is affected or unaffected or unknown.  If a dog whose DNA is stored unfortunately develops any serious health condition it is very important that the owner informs the AHT so the dog’s record is updated.  Likewise, if the dog enjoys a healthy happy life and lives to be a ripe old age that is important information too!  You do not need to submit a new DNA sample when you update the archive.
Both dog and owner information is kept in the strictest confidence, although the AHT might, periodically, distribute a list of the names of dogs whose DNA is stored to our contact at the breed club registered (who is usually the data collector), for the purposes of sample monitoring.  Only the names of dogs will be distributed and no other information will be provided by AHT.

Q. Do you need a full report of visits to my vet?
A. No. We do not require to see details of regular or routine vet visits, such as annual vaccinations or routine health checks.   Please only send details of any conditions or disease which has been diagnosed by your vet or a veterinary specialist.   As you dog ages and is still healthy, please do let us know as this information can help us too.

Q. What does it cost to store DNA?
A. This varies.  If the DNA is to be stored for research into a particular inherited condition, or for any other purposes for which funding has already been obtained, then the DNA can currently be stored free of charge.  If the DNA is to be stored for unspecified, future purposes then the AHT asks for a donation of £5 per sample to help cover administrative costs.

Q. Does my vet complete the form for Animal Health Trust or can I do it myself?
A. The completion of the submission form for Animal Health Trust is YOUR responsibility.   If you do not keep a record of your hound’s visits to the vet, you will have to ask your vet for details of any illness which has been diagnosed in the past so that you can include this with your submission.

Q.  How will I know if my samples have been received by AHT?
A . Once the samples have been frozen and the data inserted on the database, an email acknowledging receipt will be sent to the owner - provided there is an email address on the form.     Be patient - it may take a few days for the email to be sent from AHT.

Q. How will I know whether or not my new puppy has been blood tested?
A. If puppies being blood tested are not yet Kennel Club registered, they can be identified initially by the breeder by name and parentage and then once they are Kennel Club registered, the registration details can be notified to the AHT by the breeder.
The breeder then must notify puppy owners that the puppy's blood has been submitted to the AHT for future reference and should there be a change in the status of the dog's health later in its life, they should notify the AHT by submitting an official AHT Health Status Update form, and that can also be downloaded from this site.
If we can store litter information in this way, it will be very valuable when trying to monitor and establish a Condition/disease's development and mode of inheritance.
ANIMAL HEALTH TRUST

THE BASSET HOUND HEALTH GROUP COLLECTION AND RECORDING OF BLOOD AND BUCCAL SAMPLES
FOR STORAGE AT THE ANIMAL HEALTH TRUST.


Full instructions for submission are detailed on the Forms.

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