We are proud to share that we are increasing the level of testing on all of our Doodles of NC breeding moms and dads! As you all know, we stand behind the lineage and health of all of our home-raised puppies. However, we want to maintain the high level of quality of the dogs we are breeding, so by increasing testing, heritage won’t be the only thing we are relying on.
In addition to the PennHip scores, which are official at 6 months of age, we are adding the OFA Hip & Elbow Preliminary screening which is completed around a year old. OFA Hip & Elbow Testing will also be completed at 24 months of age.
What is OFA Hip & Elbow Testing?
The OFA Hip & Elbow Testing is a non-invasive screening. It requires radiographs to be taken by the veterinarian and submitted to The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals to review. And, the OFA assigns one of seven categories to the describe the joints: Excellent, Good, Fair, Borderline, Mild, Moderate, Severe.
(Look at those cute hips & elbows!)
Why focus on the hips & elbows?
Hip and elbow dysplasia is a complicated, multifactorial disease. Defined as a looseness in the joint, dysplasia causes the junction of two bones to wobble and be unstable. For instance, in the ball and socket of the hip joint (where the head of the femur and the acetabulum, or pelvis, join together) the socket needs to be deep enough to cover the ball without it slipping around. A shallow socket causes instability. This instability leads to bone-on-bone rubbing and intense pain. The friction of bone-on-bone rubbing erodes away the cartilage once cushioning the joint and leads to arthritis, or inflammation of the joint.
By testing our breeding males & females, and only using those in our line that receive top categories, we significantly decrease the chance of Doodles of NC puppies developing hip and/or elbow dysplasia.