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KC to host meeting of ophthalmologists

The Kennel Club has announced that some changes will take place to the way in which new information and data are reported with respect to the current KC/BVA/ISDS eye schemes to ensure the schemes that have been developed over many years remain of value to breeders.

This follows intensive discussion between the KC, the British Veterinary Association and the International Sheep dog Society, all of whom are committed to improving the way in which accurate information is made available to breeders, to establish an agreed procedure for the publication of results. The changes also pave the way for the establishment of a European based eye certificate that could be recognised internationally.

The Kennel Club has, in effect, now taken full control over the publication of results. Previously the status of conditions and how they were published was decided by the BVA and little or no consultation took place with the Kennel Club, breeders or breed clubs.

occasionally the right hand did not know what the left hand was doing. The publication of raw results (however accurate they may be for the individual dogs concerned) can give a distorted picture of any eye problems within a breed and lead to unnecessary concern among breeders.

To avoid such problems in the future, the results of eye tests are to be published by the Kennel Club who will now be able to ensure the most appropriate route is chosen and will take into account the relative importance of the conditions to the relevant breeds.

To make sure that the publication of results is appropriate, a KC advisory group comprising breeders, geneticists and ophthalmologists will be formed to assess the various conditions and recommend both the level of detail published and give accompanying advice on that information.


The existing BVA Eye Panel Working Party will be joined by two KC representatives so that all relevant matters can be discussed from the early stages should a new condition emerge or should it be thought that an emerging condition is becoming more serious. In this way relevant breed clubs and councils can be kept informed for progress and their views taken into consideration. The BVA is also undertaking a review of the operation of its part of the Eye Scheme and has invited the Kennel Club to take part in the review and will consider the current European Community Veterinary Organisation for recognition.

In the meantime, the Kennel Club has confirmed that it will recognise the eye scheme of the (ECVO) and will also accredit other schemes if they include essential quality controls and stand up to peer review. This means that schemes must be approved by recognised experts in the UK.

The world wide web is seen as a useful and immediate tool to pass on information quickly and it is proposed that the KC and BVA websites could be used to provide advice as well as data to breeders and owners. In the long term all three organisations are committed to a universally recognised international eye certificate and the Kennel Club has agreed to host an international meeting of ophthalmologists in February 2003 to progress this idea.