The following Report has been received from the BVA to the Breed Health Co-ordinator (July 2017)

It announces a new Pilot Scheme for an eye testing grading system and will be used at the next JHG Testing Session by James Oliver at the WSSC Championship Show on Saturday September 2nd 2017 , Cost for test will be £56 payable on the day.
To book a place please contact JHG Secretary Julie Revill - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - book early to avoid disappointment.

Primary closed angle glaucoma (PCAG)/primary angle closure glaucoma (PAGC) Pilot Project

Primary closed angle glaucoma (PCAG) / primary angle closure glaucoma (PAGC) is significantly associated with defective development of the drainage angle which is termed goniodysgenesis (gonio = angle, dysgenesis = defective development), also known as Pectinate Ligament Dysplasia (PLD) or Pectinate Ligament Abnormality (PLA).

Goniodysgenesis is inherited in several breeds and is tested for using a technique called gonioscopy. It was originally believed that the degree of goniodysgenesis did not progress after birth and so a ‘one-off’ test before breeding was advised for dogs of certified breeds. However, recent research has provided evidence of progression of goniodysgenesis with age in several breeds, namely the Flat Coated Retriever, Welsh Springer Spaniel, Dandie Dinmont Terrier, Basset Hound and Leonberger.

In consequence, the advice on gonioscopy has been updated for all breeds in which gonioscopy is performed. It is advised that for Schedule A breeds gonioscopy should be carried out every 3 years, unless any evidence to the contrary emerges.

The first test can be performed in dogs from 6 months of age onwards and current advice is that gonioscopy is performed at approximately 1, 4 and 7-8 years of age. Repeat testing should provide much needed longitudinal information about the risk of developing glaucoma in later life and, in conjunction with Breed Clubs, will enable breed-specific recommendations to be developed.

A simple grading scheme (0-3) for gonioscopy was agreed by the Eye Panel Working Party in 2016; it is being piloted from July 2017 with the aim of being formally adopted, with or without any revisions, if analysis of the results supports this approach. Initial analysis will take place at around the time of the next Eye Panel Working Party (EPWP) meeting in November 2017.

The grading scheme will be used to complement - and may ultimately replace - the ‘Clinically Unaffected’ or ‘Clinically Affected’ classification that currently records the results of examination. The EPWP has proposed that a grading system reflects more accurately what the Panellist observes and is better able to inform the potential risk of developing glaucoma in later life. It will provide owners with useful information to aid breeding decisions. The grading proposal is, in part, also a recognition that ‘Clinically Unaffected’ cannot be an accurate description unless the gonioscopic findings are entirely normal.

The Kennel Club database is not set up to record grades, so the pilot gonioscopy grading project will run in parallel with the existing layout of the Certificate of Eye Examination. The recording of results as ‘Clinically Unaffected’ and ‘Clinically Affected’ under Goniodysgenesis (G) continues as before for the benefit of the Kennel Club and the results will be published as they are at present. The grades will be recorded and collated by the BVA


Protocol to be followed for the Pilot Grading Project

On the Certificate of Eye Examination


Gonioscopy grading recorded under Descriptive Comments






Tick one box

Should there be disparity between the grade assessments in each eye, it is the higher value that is recorded on the Certificate of Eye Examination under Descriptive comments.



(G) Goniodysgenesis    

Tick one box as at present



 Grade  Gonioscopic findings  Diagnosis
 0 Normal iridocorneal angle (ICA) with no/minimal (0%-<1%) pectinate ligament abnormality (PLA) Advice: Normal iridocorneal angle - highly unlikely to develop primary glaucoma.
Currently classified for KC publication as ‘Clinically Unaffected’
 1 1-25% of ICA affected by PLA Advice: mildly affected - unlikely to develop primary glaucoma.
Currently classified for KC publication as ‘Clinically Unaffected’
 2 26-75% of ICA affected by PLA Advice: moderately affected - low risk of developing primary glaucoma.
Currently classified for KC publication as ‘Clinically Unaffected’
 3 >75% of ICA affected, and/or severe narrowing of ICA Advice: severely affected - highest risk of developing primary glaucoma, breeding not recommended.
Currently classified for KC publication as ‘Clinically Affected’


July 2017


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