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Playful Pup
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95 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone have any solid information regarding American versus Canadian bloodlines? I've been told that the American lines have more cancers than the Canadian lines, though I was told this by someone from Canada. Lol.

Anyway, I'm trying my hardest to find a good line that has excellent longevity as well as the Golden's temperament and qualities.

I'm in the process of targeting kennels I feel meet all of the requirements (clearances, temperament, etc.). I live in the New England/Tri-state area, and I'm willing to travel as far as Canada if it means purchasing a Golden who's going to be with us for a long time.

So, in short: American vs. Canadian bloodlines? Which is better, or do both have their pros and cons and I need to weigh each carefully?
 

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Premium Member
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16,438 Posts
After studying/ researching extensively and following the Golden Retriever Club Of America's research too, I have come to believe that cancer in goldens does not boil down to particular lines. We're all in it together- all of our beautiful dogs are at risk and most have a chance too to live long. I don't believe we know enough to say what lines are cancer free, bc I do not believe there are any. Avoiding pedigrees with very young cancer deaths, avoiding pesticides like on golf courses and your lawn at home, feeding high quality diets and keeping dogs trim, dealing with inflammation issues like allergies/tick diseases immediately, grooming dogs daily looking for any bumps or masses. . . all these precautions and more make sense to me. Generalizing about American V Candian goldens just can't really help ease the valid fear of cancer too much.

http://www.simplesite.com/pebwin/6810435

At the bottom of this page is an incredibly interesting article on cancer in golden retrievers.http://www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/ccah/cancer_golden%20retrievers.cfm

I've had goldens all my life, from birth until today( even in college/ grad school), and I have lost 3 to cancer ages 15 1/2 , 13, and 9. Because of this, my dogs participate in Idexx/NCState's study of lymphoma/ tick disease. It is hard to conduct research because people naturally shy away from looking too realistically at future cancer for a beloved dog, and some people are very secretive about cancer. However, it makes me feel like I'm helping in a tiny way to do this, and to give financially to funds like The Zeke Cancer Fund/ The Golden Retriever Foundation.
 

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Playful Pup
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95 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Excellent! Thank you for the link. Seems to be a growing problem within the breed itself and needs to be concentrated on as a whole. This will certainly help me in my decision making.
 

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Where The Bitches Rule
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6,429 Posts
Jill (Ljilly28) provides some very sound info in her reply. The only other thing I would add is that most American and Canadian lines truly are crossed with each other. K9data.com is a great source for checking longevity in "lines". You click on "5 Generation Pedigree" at the bottom of the page of the dog you are researching, then click on "5 Generation Longevity Pedigree" at the bottom of that page. It will display the age at time of death for every dog in that 5 generations for every dog provided the dates of birth and death have been entered.
 

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Playful Pup
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95 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you both! I'd been to K9Data to look up some dogs' pedigrees, but I didn't know about the 5-generation longevity pedigree option. Helpful information. :)
 

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chew chew chew
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3,571 Posts
I would say there isn't a 'true' Canadian or American line - they're all mixed in! However, there are some lines where there are early cancers, and looking at longevity is a good way to get an idea on that sort of thing. Of course a breeder/stud owner isn't going to say that their dog has early cancer in their background...

Lana
 

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est.1989
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4,374 Posts
Excellent! Thank you for the link. Seems to be a growing problem within the breed itself and needs to be concentrated on as a whole. This will certainly help me in my decision making.
I think Cancer a a whole has increased in humans as well, fast food,microwave age, increased pollution,sedentary lifestyles, I could list factors here until the cows come home...cancer is not a black and white issue I am afraid, if a breeder tells you it has never affected them or their lines, they are A) new at this game B) dishonest C) have little info in regard to the puppies/dogs they have sold etc etc...cancer touches us all, you can try to stack the deck in your favor, but sadly here and there that dreaded C hits us all :confused: ...good luck
 

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11,326 Posts
I think LJilly covered the issue wonderfully in her post.

I'll add that statistically, one breeder's lines or even a large set of lines doesn't constitute a statistically large enough sampling to provide good data on cancer rates. The causes are just too complex, and different cancers have different genetic predispositions.

If a whole litter is afflicted with identical cancer types (and when does that ever happen?), then the breeding shouldn't be repeated, but beyond that, a few extra occurrences of cancer don't really tell you much. In fact, you'll see higher rates in excellent breeders who report more information on k9data, OHR, or personally when you inquire about their dogs, simply because those breeders are more honest and open.

There's no such thing as a "type" of Golden or a Golden from a particular area that has lower rates of cancer overall, and anybody who's claiming so either doesn't understand how cancer works or is selling you a bill of goods.
 
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