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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I was researching a breeder and to my alarm she had knowingly bred a dog with A3-Eyelids, distichiasis on her cerfs. Is this bad? Would you as a responsible breeder do the same? Would you be ok with buying a puppy whose mom had A3-Eyelids, distichiasis? Thanks for any feedback or advice.
 

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Distichiasis in Goldens is usually a pretty minor issue, so a dog who's strong in lots of other areas will often be bred despite having it. That's why it's listed as "breeder's option" on the CERF form. By itself, it's not a strike against the breeder at all.

Distichias are misplaced eyelashes. They tend to grow on the inside of the eyelid where they can touch the cornea. Because they're frequently small, fine hairs, they rarely cause problems. An ophthalmologist can freeze the misplaced follicles if they cause problems like weeping or ulcers, but mostly they're left untreated unless they cause problems. One of my dogs has them. At one point, a heavy one broke off halfway down and caused a small corneal ulcer that cleared up quickly with treatment. The ophthalmologist said that she still probably wouldn't bother freezing them unless it happened again. He's 4, and that's the only problem we've ever seen with it, and I can't even be sure it was the distichia that did it rather than a scratch he could have gotten while out hiking.

Discuss the issue with the breeder in terms of the risk to the puppies. For example, is there history of distichiasis on the father's side? How severe is the mother's, and how many of her littermates and other relatives have them? Open and honest conversations like this are quite productive.

But, as a simple answer to your question, no, it's not an alarm for a breeder to breed a dog with a breeder's option code on a CERF. It's still a passing CERF.
 

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Yes I would be fine with that.... eyelid distichia is a strange thing... it is a hair growing out of the gland on the eyelid.. these hairs grow and fall out and grow and fall out ... which means that depending on the timing of the eye exam the distichia may or may not show up on the exam. This is why there are quite a few dogs out there don't get diagnosed until they are older.... or in middle age.. they had it before but the eyelashes weren't there when the exam happened. Now that having been said once you know about it, you don't want to double up on it as it seems that distichia gets worse if you breed a dog with it to another dog with it... but if you breed to a clear you may or may not get distichia in a puppy. The problem for breeders is that you may have a dog with distichia and never know about it... especially if the hairs don't exist when you have the eye exam done. some hairs are hard and coarse and some are softer.

My flat coat bitch Shalva has a couple distichia in one eye only. Just about the time I notice that her eye is tearing a bit it stops and the lashes fall out and it is a non issue again. In all honesty it seems to have been more of an issue when she was young than it is now that she is 8... I haven't seen that tearing in years to be honest. That having been said she was bred to a clear dog and none of the puppies have come up with distichia... everyone has perfectly normal eyes... no tearing nothing...

I certainly would ask about it... and ask about the stud dog but I wouldn't be all that upset about it... but that is just me.

If you do end up with a puppy with distichia... the eyelashes can be frozen off (If I remember correctly) relatively inexpensively... not a big deal
 
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