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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 07:03 AM Thread Starter
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OFA ratings

I have noticed that some members of the forum recommend only buying puppies from breeders where both the sire and dam have at least OFA good hips.

My thought is that if breeders only bred dogs with OFA good or better, the gene pool would be greatly reduced. In my research, I have noticed one litter where there were 3 pups listed who became champions - one was Fair, one was Good, and one was Excellent. OFA states that a dog with a Fair rating is not dysplastic.

OFA hip statistics for Goldens evaluated from 2011 to 2015 show a percentage of 8.4% Excellent and 15.5% dysplastic. This leaves 76.1% that were either Good or Fair. I could not find a breakdown for % Good and % Fair. A total of 156,606 Goldens have been evaluated pre-1990 through 2015.

We all want healthy dogs, but narrowing the gene pool by not breeding OFA Fair dogs could lead to more health problems in the long run.

I would like to hear more thoughts on this from other members. Thanks
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 07:13 AM
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I haven't seen this-
Fair hips are passing hips, I tell people that 'fair' is not 'almost dysplastic' - they are rating the conformation of the hip joint in the non-dysplastic dog.

Borderline, and below- those are dysplastic dogs.
Your numbers for Excellent are twice what I have seen, but I have not looked lately- so if your numbers are right, that just means continuing to breed animals with hip clearances is causing an increase in the number of excellently conformed hip joints in Goldens.

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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 10:00 AM
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I'll prefaces this with I have probably only looked at maybe a 1000, maybe 1500 Goldens on OFA (far less then some on here) but the percentage of OFA ratings of Fair and Good I would think is pretty close to even. Without keeping track I feel there isn't one rating I would say I have noticed being much more frequent then the other (being fair or good rating), maybe good a little more then fair. The one you tend to notice are excellent since they really aren't very common. I rare see more then 1 or 2 dogs in any hobby breeding program that have an excellent rating.


I have never worried about a fair rating in a breeding pair that I was looking to purchase a pup from, even if both have a fair rating. Like Robin said above, passing is passing and means the hips aren't dysplastic.

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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 11:04 AM
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We want to avoid genetic bottlenecks if at all possible. IMHO, popular sire syndrome is by far the worst for the breed. You're much better off avoiding a litter from a popular sire, or which has lot of popular sires in the pedigree, than you are buying a puppy from a dog with fair hips. And, after all, as Prism says, fair hips aren't "almost dysplastic" hips, they are passing, correct, nondysplastic hips.
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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 01:15 PM
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For people on this forum looking for a puppy - as long as the clearances are all there, it's an easy recommend. Because a lot of people looking for pups on this forum are looking at really bad breeders sometimes. It's breeders breeding dogs with no clearances (includes prelim or none). And this sadly includes us sometimes deliberately not looking behind the parents. As long as the parents have full clearances (eyes, heart, hips, elbows), it's all good.

Fair is a passing grade, PLUS - Excellent hips can produce fair hips. Fair hips can produce excellent hips.

Personally speaking, I DO somewhat look for Excellent hips close behind my pup... if I am buying? But that's because I want a dog to have a long career in obedience and now conformation has added some pressure as far as getting more of a sure thing in something that really has no sure things?

With my Jovi (and Glee), their parents both have Good hips. And then 3 out of the 4 grandparents have Excellent hips (other gp has Good hips). That makes me somewhat happy - but it does not take the stress and uncertainty out of the equation while waiting until he's 2 to do hips/elbows.

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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 07:26 PM Thread Starter
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OFA hip Statistics for All goldens evaluated (including pre-1990 through 2015) are:
# of Goldens evaluated: 156,606
% Excellent: 4.7
% Dysplastic: 19.9

OFA Statistics for Goldens for just the period of 2011-2015 are:
# of Goldens evaluated: 16,161
% Excellent: 8.4
% Dysplastic: 15.5

Of course it may be hard to be precise because owners may choose not to have failing x-rays submitted.

However, the huge increase in excellent ratings over time indicates to me that breeding dogs with OFA passing hips has made a huge difference over time.

You can check out these figures for Goldens and figures for other breeds on OFA the site is OFFA.org.

Thanks so much for your replies to my post.
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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-18-2019, 06:19 AM
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Wow- that first set was the last I'd seen. So indeed, breeding clearances is working.

I know the cardiac clearance by cardiologist has had a similar impact, maybe even more of one-

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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 10-20-2019, 01:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Megora View Post
For people on this forum looking for a puppy - as long as the clearances are all there, it's an easy recommend. Because a lot of people looking for pups on this forum are looking at really bad breeders sometimes. It's breeders breeding dogs with no clearances (includes prelim or none). And this sadly includes us sometimes deliberately not looking behind the parents. As long as the parents have full clearances (eyes, heart, hips, elbows), it's all good.

Fair is a passing grade, PLUS - Excellent hips can produce fair hips. Fair hips can produce excellent hips.

Personally speaking, I DO somewhat look for Excellent hips close behind my pup... if I am buying? But that's because I want a dog to have a long career in obedience and now conformation has added some pressure as far as getting more of a sure thing in something that really has no sure things?

With my Jovi (and Glee), their parents both have Good hips. And then 3 out of the 4 grandparents have Excellent hips (other gp has Good hips). That makes me somewhat happy - but it does not take the stress and uncertainty out of the equation while waiting until he's 2 to do hips/elbows.
I know this is a little bit of an older post now and I also don’t mean to derail it or hijack but you mentioned you look for better hips since you do obedience and conformation, do you think it is possibly even more important for other, possibly more active or I guess demanding, sports like agility or dock diving? I’ve been thinking of trying those with the next dog I get as well as possibly nose work or skijoring or bikejoring.

I know fairs are technically passing but it seems if they’re doing a lot of jumping and twisting or pulling it could be a bit more of a concern??

Or do you think fair hips would be perfectly fine?
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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 10-20-2019, 05:00 PM
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do you think it is possibly even more important for other, possibly more active or I guess demanding, sports like agility or dock diving? I’ve been thinking of trying those with the next dog I get as well as possibly nose work or skijoring or bikejoring.
More important for agility... but quite honest, overall structure of dogs = very important for agility as well. But depends on what you are DOING in agility too. Dabbling is different than what some of the serious top level stuff people do.

Nosework is low concern. Dogs are not exactly running full distances in a nosework trial.

Dockdiving is as demanding as you make it.

Skijoring and bikejoring - I have no idea what either of those are without googling. But I suspect other breeds might be more idea for these things. Golden retrievers are not breeds shaped and intended for long distance running.

Excess - Jumping, twisting, pulling are negative for any joints AND muscles. You have to be in good contact with a chiropractor if these are your plans.

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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 10-20-2019, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Kdogg331 View Post
I know fair hips are technically passing but it seems if they’re doing a lot of jumping and twisting or pulling it could be a bit more of a concern??

Or do you think fair hips would be perfectly fine?
Fair hips are not "technically" passing. This characterization misunderstands the grade and the hips. Fair is passing, period. Not "technically," any more than mild dysplasia is "technically" dysplastic.

And I've had dogs with fair hips that were agility and hunting dogs, and they did just fine their whole lives.

Personally, I think the OFA should change "fair" to "correct" or "passing" or some such. The fair/good/excellent scale is a technical grade characterizing the amount of coverage of the femoral heads, and isn't an indication of how close they are to being dysplastic. It's time we get away from this misunderstanding of passing, non-dysplastic hips, which I think is caused by our lay interpretation of "fair" as being "almost dysplastic," which it is not.

We don't, for instance, grade rear angulation as fair/good/excellent depending on the amount of angulation. Nor do we grade coat length in that way. The scale for hips is taxonomic, and says more about the priorities of tho radiologists and orthopedists who created the scale than it does the functionality of the hips graded. It's not as if by creating the grade they discovered new and different kinds of hips. They are simply dividing them up according to their own agendas, the way an optometrist might divide his nearsighted customers into single/bifocal/progressive lens customers.
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