Genetics & Breeding

For articles and research papers on specific health issues please see:


Basic Principles of Genetics: Probability of Inheritance

The value of studying genetics is in understanding how we can predict the likelihood of inheriting particular traits.  This can help plant and animal breeders in developing varieties that have more desirable qualities.  It can also help people explain and predict patterns of inheritance in family lines.


Collie Eye Anomaly In Australian Shepherds (CA Sharpe – ASGHI)

Even though the Australian Shepherd has a different gene for CEA/CH (and a DNA test), this article is important to read, as the strategies used in the breed before DNA testing can be used as successfully in the Pyrenean Shepherd to manage CEA/CH.

Managing the Carriers – Pt. 2 (Dr. Carmen Battaglia)

Summary – Ways to identify and address various modes of inheritance in breeding dogs.

Uncommon Breeding Strategies (Rhonda Hovan – OFA Board of Directors)

Summary – All breeds face complex challenges in attempting to achieve goals of correct conformation, temperament, type, and movement – along with good health – this can be especially daunting for breeders of rare breeds or breeds with small numbers.


Review of the Current State of Genetic Testing – A Living Resource (Liza Gershony, DVM, PhD and Anita Oberbauer, PhD)

Intro – Genetic tests for dog traits, that is their physical characteristics, and diseases have become increasingly available over the past few years, offering exciting opportunities for improving the health of dogs at both individual and population levels. Dog owners and breeders have long dreamed of having genetic tools to allow them to determine if a dog is predisposed to any genetic diseases and/or to make educated breeding decisions that will improve the health of future generations. While the increasing availability of these tools is exciting, many genetic test results are difficult to interpret and can lead to confusion.

Canine Genetic Testing – Introduction to the Technologies (Matthew Breen, PhD, CBiol, FRSB, Pamela S. Rosman, and Mark Dunn)

Intro – Brief introduction to current technologies as they apply to canine genetic testing

Pet genomics medicine runs wild (Lisa Moses, Steve Niemi and Elinor Karlsson)

Genetic testing for dogs is big business. It is too easy for companies to sell false hope, warn Lisa Moses, Steve Niemi and Elinor Karlsson. They call for regulation.

Pyrenean Shepherd DNA Screening Tests (IPDF DogWellNet)

Summary – Listing of research supported tests for Pyrenean Shepherds.


Genetic variability in French dog breeds assessed by pedigree data (G. Leroy, X. Rognon, A. Varlet, C. Joffrin & E. Verrier)

Summary – Pedigree data of nine French dog breeds, namely Barbet (BAR), Basset fauve de Bretagne (BAF), Beauceron (BEN), Berger des Pyrenees (BRP), Bouledogue Franc ̧ais (BUF), Braque Saint-Germain (BQG), Dogue de Bordeaux (DOB), Epagneul Breton (EPB) and Montagne des Pyrenees (MOP), were analysed… The results are discussed in relation with the demographic situation and the use of each breed. The method used to class an endangered breed and the ways to preserve the genetic variability, when necessary, are evoked.

Genetic diversity of dog breeds: within-breed diversity comparing genealogical and molecular data (G. Leroy, E. Verrier, J. C. Meriaux and X. Rognon)

Summary – The genetic diversity of 61 dog breeds raised in France was investigated. Genealogical analyses were performed on the pedigree file of the French kennel club….it was concluded that special efforts should be made to maintain diversity for three breeds, namely the Berger des Pyrenees, Braque Saint-Germain and Bull Terrier.