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Joined: 2015-02-12

Hi everyone, I am new to the forum. I want to say that I wrote a pretty long post but lost it all! So kind of irritated. I had (still have) several questions but will ask later when I don't want to still throw my phone across the room.
So for now I will keep it to the one burning questions I have.

What rate of incidence do we have for DM in the breed? I have an 8 yo doberman and as he gets older I worry about what issues he may develop, especially having not come from a great breeder. I have the opportunity to test for DM for only $30 (a lab is running a special but I do believe tonight is the last night to order). It's a really good deal but is it something worth checking out on an 8 year old dobe?

DobieWanKenobi's picture
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Joined: 2011-08-28

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For $30, why not? A positive diagnosis means you can manage the condition, and a negative diagnosis means you won't have to worry about it. I've no idea how common DM is in Dobermans.

Welcome aboard, by the way. ;-)

I'm not familiar with the acronymn "DM"  do you mean DCM? Dialated Cardomyopathy?

Joined: 2015-02-12

No, I mean  Degenerative Myelopathy. DCM I know is a huge concern and I'll be ordering a holter test for my boy and taking him in for an echo as part of his new yearly stuff. Right now he is just doing yearly vet visits with blood work, urine and fecal (the normal vet checkup stuff). Since he's older now though, I'm getting a bit more worried.

I am thinking I am going to go ahead and order the test as I guess It couldn't hurt. However, I'd still love to hear everyone's opinions on if DM is something that is to be watched for in Dobes. Thanks!

DobieWanKenobi's picture
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Joined: 2011-08-28

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I don't believe it's a frequent issue in Dobermans.

I've been in Dobermans for 22 years and have been showing for 12 years - I've never heard of testing Dobermans for this.  Hmmmmm. I test for thyroid, do full blood workups starting with a baseline at age 2, hips/elbows for breeding dogs, Cardiac ultrasounds & 24 hour holter monitors starting with a baseline at 2 or 3, cerf eye exams when I find a clinic at a show. VWD DNA unless they are clear by parentage. 

glengate's picture
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Joined: 2009-07-22

I think that it may be a common enough problem for Dobermans lucky enough to live to an older age.  I've personally had 3 who had it (ages 10, 11 and 13) and an old German shorthaired pointer that had it, too - she was 14.  I'm not sure I'd really trust a test for it - is it a DNA test?  I think I might have heard that there is one, but I'd assume that dogs who may test for it might not actually exhibit it. 

eileennellie's picture
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Joined: 2008-04-21

My girl had to be let go due to DM, at age 12 1/2. Didn't show any signs of it until about three months prior. We didn't realize what it was for almost two months, we (and the vet) suspected back problems, until she started knuckling badly and whining a lot. If there is a test available, I would 100% get it, although knowing sooner might have made our time together feel limited. We were lucky in that she showed no symptoms until the very end of the disease progression.