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Health
 
28-04-2005             06-12-2007
 
 
 
We dedicate this chapterto Macawi, who's illness should help us to restore the health in our breed.
And to all other Portugese podengo's who sufferd and died because of the lysosomal storage disease
 
 
 
Overall, the Portuguese Podengo is a healthy and strong breed. In Portugal, the country of origin, there are no hereditary anomalies known.Nevertheless, nevertheless, this does not mean there are no anomalies.We should keep in mind that if a dog over there is not functional, it will not be kept......
 
Actually, our beloved breed seems to suffer from a
Hereditary Storage Disease.
in the Netherlands we know of 6 Portuguese Podengo Medio wirehaired, who suffered and died from the same horrible symptoms within the firts two / two and a half year of their lives, This is about 10% of all Dutch Portuguese Podengo medio we know!
 
 
About Lysosomal Storage diseases:
 
These come in all kinds of varieties of a non functional or lacking type of enzyme in a cell.The cell needs these enzymes to break certain subtances into useful pieces.If this does not happen, these substances will store in the cell, the cell will malfunction and will finally be distroyed.This causes disorders in the function of the concerning organs that the cell is part of and eventually will stop the organ from functioning at all.
 
This process is a heriditary disease, this disease is also found in other breeds and....Humans.
Most Lysosomal storage diseases are autosomal recessive, which means that if both mum and dad carry the disease's genetic make-up, to get a child that suffers šnd dies form it.You can not tell or see on the outside if a dog is a carrier of this disease, it takes DNA research.
 
 
Symptoms:
 
Pups actually look quit normal , but the lack of coordination is alreaddy there,  (e.g.they miss jump the couch .)We tend to look over these signs because pups can de clumsy, right?
 
As they grow older, the symptoms grow clearer.The dogs seem to frighten easily, they see things that are not there, they spin, they have no coorditation between their front and hind legs, they fall over, get epilepticaly-like seizures, they seem to get blind and deaf....
( it looks very much like a dog recovering from anesthesia)
The dogs usually die before their 3rd birthday.........
 
We have made a clip of a Dutch bred Portugese Podengo Medio, Great Macawi, owned and dearly loved by Kitty and Remco.
She is just 2 years old, and is very ill.
Because of the Lysosomal storage disease her brains insist in giving her the signal to sneeze.Every tims she sneezes her nose hits the floor because she is not capable to stand stable.Her gate is very unstable and it's clear she has difficulties seeing and hearing.
(You will not see her having a epileptic - like seizure)
 
Watch the clip at:
 
We have a second clip from another Portugese Podengo Medio, Filipe.
He died of the horrible disease before his second birthday, he was owned an loved by the American Lauren and Matthias.
This clip shows a epileptic-like seizure, which is a common symptom of this disease.
 
Watch the clip at:
 
 
That's why we need your help!!
 
In Janari 2008 a veterinarian will collect blood from as much Portuguese Podengo's as possible in a veterinary clinic in Apeldoorn ( The Netherlands).
These blood samples will be send to Finland for futher examination
 
If you own a Portuguese Podengo, please help us and sign up your dog to donate some blood, so we can finally find a DNA marker for this terrible disease.
This is a very important step in getting a healthy breed.
 
Research will be done top find out which storage disease is involved.Afther that, a DNA profile will make it possible to test all dogs, especially those to be used for breeding programs. This is the only way to avoid Carrier x carrier combinations. Mind that carriers are completely heathy dogs, not to be distinguished from free dogs, but they will pass the disease on to their posterity.
 
Holland does not have a breedclub yet, but fortunately the Finnish breed club offered us help! Thanks to them our veterinarians ( especially Dr.Sofie, Ghent University) can work together with a Finnish professor who is specialized in human storage diseases.
 
You may wonder why we try to reach you this way. Unfortunately we don't have all addresses from all Portugese Podengo owners.We tried getting addresses from the other breeders, but they don't seem very keen in pointing out the weaknesses of the Portuguese Podengo.After all, it's a form of income.
If their champion dogs are carriers, they are not to be bred with.
 
If you have any question left, please do niot hesitate and email us at:
 
 
 
According to a comprehensive list we also can find the next problems in the Portugese Podengo
 
* Hermaphroditism ( possessing both male ande female genitalia, hereditary)
* Youth cataract ( hereditary)
* Distichiasis (extra eyelahs or lashes that arises from a abonormal spot on the eyelid)
* undershot
* Lacking of teeth an molars
* High level of strivite Crystals in the urine ( dissolves on B.A.R.F)
* Phantom/pseudo-pregnancy
* Hypothyroid in older dogs
* Crook Tail
* Loss of Pigmntation ( bleu eyes, white nose)