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Breeding Health

All of our dogs are health tested prior to breeding. They will have a minimum of hip x-rays evaluated through OFA or Penn-hip, eye evaluation done with a board certified veterinary ophthalmologist, congenital cardiac exam or SA or thyroid test done as well as genetic based testing done or be cleared by parentage (neither parent was a carrier of vWD, NE, DM). Their individual health test results are linked on their own pages. 

As all of our dogs are worked in some sort of performance or hunted, we keep them in top condition including visits to the vet, chiropractor and acupuncturist as needed.


VGL testing (Canine Genetic Diversity (CGD) DNA Test offered at UC Davis - Veterinary Genetics Laboratory) is used to identify genetic diversity within dog breeds, assess traits of interest, and determine genetic predisposition to health conditions. The goal of the testing is to assist in producing greater genetic diversity within a breed. The general idea being greater diversity = greater longevity.

Our breeding dogs have their VGL done and are on public record on BetterBred. In addition, we will usually test some puppies in each litter, some of those results are also public depending on their owners' wishes.

Our goal is to produce genetically diverse, healthy dogs that conform to the breed standard and have the temperament, drive and energy to do anything you wish.


CDDY in Standard Poodles

What is CDDY?


CDDY is chondrodystrophy. It refers to the relative proportion between a dog’s legs and body and usually displays as shorter legs and longer body. CDDY is caused by a mutation on the gene that causes not only the short-legged appearance but also abnormal premature degeneration of the intervertebral discs (also known as IVDD). These discs are more susceptible to herniation.

The mutation was discovered in 2017 at UCDavis.

Many breeds have CDDY, think Dachshunds, Corgis and Beagles (to name only a few). It is also seen frequently in Toy and Miniature Poodles. It was not thought to be present in Standards until recently however the test for CDDY is very new having become available commercially in 2019.

The gene is considered ‘autosomal dominant’ which means that only one copy means the dog is chondrodystrophic. According to the literature this means that the dog does have IVDD but does NOT mean that the dog will have debilitating pain or will herniate a disc.

Again, many dogs have this gene and live very long, active and healthy lives.

However, it is something that breeders should be aware of in order to make educated breeding choices.

For us at Divinity we have decided that, at this point, we will not breed a dog that has a copy of CDDY. There are many factors involved in this decision and I don’t condemn any other programs that have the mutation that are actively trying to remove it and still achieve their other goals. There are no perfect dogs and we all must make our breeding decisions based on what our goals are and taking into consideration the ever developing testing that are available to us.  


I have included a link to a podcast at the Functional Dog Collaborative interviewing the researcher that found the mutation, Dr Danika Bannasch.


Danika Bannasch, DVM, PhD: Chondrodystrophy

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