PRA (prcd) Progressive Retinal Atrophy
(progressive rod cone degeneration or disease):
This is a condition of the eye in the Portuguese Water Dog that causes degeneration of the retina and eventually will cause blindness. It is usually a late onset condition. The condition was first reported in the Portuguese Water Dog in 1990 and since that time research into the condition has produced a DNA mutation gene test to identify dogs that either carry the gene (carriers) do not carry the gene (clear) or affected by the condition (affected). Mode of inheritance is Autosomal recessive.
Carrier and Affected dogs should only be bred to Clear dogs to avoid ever producing prod puppies. Testing for PRA (prod) is done by blood sample or by Cheek Swab and the laboratories carrying out this test are Optigen in the USA (www.Optigen.com) and Laboklin (Laboklin.co.uk)
A new form of PRA which is early onset has been discovered in the PWD in 2017 and DNA-based test has been developed to target the mutation responsible for Early Onset PRA (EOPRA) in the Portuguese Water Dog.
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