Thursday 15 March 2012

BVA clears up eye test confusion

The BVA has just released a further statement regarding eye exams in the hope of clarifying what is and isn't part of the official BVA/KC Canine Health Eye Scheme.

Essentially, it turns out that the current scheme does not - currently - specify conditions relating to the eyelids, tear production and drainage.

"This means that eyelid problems such as entropion, ectropion and distichiasis (extra eyelashes) are not certified under the Scheme but are noted in the middle section of the certificate and not the bottom section where the inherited eye disease status is recorded. This information is sent to a consultant who collates the data on emerging conditions," explains the BVA.

"In addition to a routine eye examination gonioscopy may be offered in appropriate breeds. This is treated as a separate examination."

In other words, producing the bottom section of an eye certificate which concludes there are no problems is not evidence that the dog is free of conditions - such as entropion/ectroption/conjuctitivis - which are not currently certified under the Scheme.

The sceptical among you, then, should be asking to see the whole darn thing.

The BVA says it is "finalising a new design of the certificate to give greater prominence to the list of conditions that should be noted."

Commenting, Ian Mason, Chief Panellist, said:

“Following the veterinary checks at Crufts some confusion has arisen regarding the BVA/KC/ISDS Eye Scheme, which we would like to address. The Scheme does not currently certify adnexal problems such as entropion and ectropion, although this information may be noted and discussed during the eye examination.

“The Eye Panel Working Party is very keen to collect data on breed-related ocular problems. We are currently finalising a new certificate to give this information more prominence, and we discussed these changes with representatives of the high profile breeds at a Kennel Club seminar in November.

“We hope that the increased attention on eye conditions as a result of the veterinary checks at Crufts will allow us to educate more and more breeders and owners.”


  1. Annie Macfarlane15 March 2012 at 21:43

    Jemima, while it's quite correct that these conditions are not taken into account when carrying out the eye test....they are commented upon in the centre area as a distinctive mark. Opthalmologists don't have to make the comments but I have known people who have had eye tests carried out that have the diagnosis of entropion. Unless your breed has specific eye test requirements, the eye test results are private and personal...they do not appear on the KC mate select programme. You just have to take the breeder's word for it that the test was clear..and while it was clear the dog could still be suffering from entropion/ectropion/diamond stud dog owners and bitch owners really need to see the eye test cert before allowing their dogs to be used at stud/bitches to be covered.

  2. Sensational claptrap once again in this blog - what a load of shite

  3. At the meeting you refer to all of us acknowledge that there are health issues to be addressed. Dog Breeders have put many thousands of pounds into schemes to improve the health of their breeds. Some of us have instigated genetic testing for a condition that we don’t even think exists in our breed but just in case we are checking. The way that the KC has gone about this vet testing is just alienating us all and will not engender support for health initiatives. You blog is very baised.