FOR A GERMAN SHEPHERD DOG
Every Breed has specific genetic predispositions to certain diseases and conditions. This is due to many factors and the way all breeds of dogs were created - by breeding closely related dogs, similar dogs and dogs sharing similar genetic pool. To breed responsibly, means to have risks of producing unhealthy puppies be minimal. Responsible breeders always screen breeding stock for heritable diseases and remove affected animals from breeding program. Affected animals are altered; may be placed as pets as long as health issues are disclosed to buyers/adopters. Reputable breeders have working knowledge of genetics and generally avoids inbreeding. Of course, there is never 100% guarantee that two fully health tested dogs will not produce a puppy with a fault - no matter what a breeder tells you. But a puppy produced by health-tested parents with a strong health-tested pedigree is a lot less likely to result with a genetic fault. We agree to breed-related risks the day we agree to purchase this specific breed and the benefits of owning the dog of your dreams way outweighs the risks related to the genetics of this breed.
Orthopedic Foundation for Animals lists the recommended health screening tests that breeders should perform on their breeding stock animals before consider their breeding. Breed-specific health screening provides basic information for breeders to make more informed breeding decisions in order to reduce the incidence of inherited disease. The results of genetic health screening also provide valuable information for potential puppy buyers looking for responsible breeders that health test their breeding stock.
GOOD TO KNOW: dogs that were tested under OFA have their results available to public. Anyone can visit OFA website and utilize the "Look up OFA health-tested dogs" tool on the top of the screen. Please note, that dogs that passes health screening will be listed with their OFA numbers and results of the health screen and dogs that did not qualify to receive OFA number (due to hip or elbow dysplasia) will have the diagnosis posted instead of the qualifying number OR will not have results posted at all - owners/breeders can choose if they wish to have the abnormal results be posted to public. Beware of breeders that have HD/ED OFA certification printed on paper or posted on their websites, but there is no record of this certification on OFA website. With advanced photoshop skills any certification is easy to create at home.
NOTE: that German Shepherd Dogs that were tested under SV (Germany) will not have their Hip and Elbow results posted on OFA. Instead, a user need to visit the German website called SV-Database online to look up the results. Unfortunately, a membership is required to use this feature, as it it typically a professional tool to be used for breeders in Germany. We do hold a membership with SV, and most of our dogs (even those born in USA) were tested under SV rules and have their results available on this website along with A-stamp printed on the pedigree.