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I received Beau’s test results today and wanted to share for those who are fascinated (like me) with DNA testing of humans and animals. I knew his sire was a DCM1 carrier so I am not surprised by the results and, as the adage goes, praemonitus, praemunitus [forewarned is forearmed].

Now I just have to find a vet in DC who can work with me on annual Holters and echocardiogram. Overall, if I am interpreting the results correctly, he is reasonably healthy and I welcome any expert input or DNA testing, in general.

He is just shy of 16 weeks, about 45 pounds and 21 inches at the shoulder. We are having a great time in training and working on our ‘finals’ for the last class (in 4 weeks) where we have to demonstrate the commands and finish with a trick. I had forgotten how enjoyable a puppy can be when not running around like a deranged toddler running with scissors and armed with a box of matches. He has even started sitting quietly in his crate when I am sitting in front of it. We made it to 16 1/2 minutes yesterday. Yay! He is teething but is less sharky than last week. He is progressing quickly with all his commands including ‘wait’, ’drop’ and ‘mat’. He is a lovebug, a cuddler, and a joy - certainly the brightest part of my ****ty year. I think my mother would adore him and so happy she was able to help me name him before she passed away. The last photo is Beau with one of her dogs, Daisy.

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Got mutt?
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The tests for the two currently known DCM markers are not that reliable for predicting whether or not a dog will develop DCM. Dogs that have tested homozygous negative have developed it, and dogs who have tested as homozygous positive have not. You still should do regular echoes and holters.
 

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I'd find the DPCA chapter club closest to you and get in touch with them. Many offer yearly echo clinics that make echoes much less expensive. My club does (I'm the one who organizes them). They can cut echoes down to half (or less) the regular price, and make them much more affordable. You can also usually find a place to rent a holter monitor and do that yourself, which is much cheaper. Yearly testing is super important!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The tests for the two currently known DCM markers are not that reliable for predicting whether or not a dog will develop DCM. Dogs that have tested homozygous negative have developed it, and dogs who have tested as homozygous positive have not. You still should do regular echoes and holters.
Rosemary, I’d planned on starting when he is 2. Is that the right age? Thank you for the information and advice!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I'd find the DPCA chapter club closest to you and get in touch with them. Many offer yearly echo clinics that make echoes much less expensive. My club does (I'm the one who organizes them). They can cut echoes down to half (or less) the regular price, and make them much more affordable. You can also usually find a place to rent a holter monitor and do that yourself, which is much cheaper. Yearly testing is super important!
MeadowCat, thank you! Is 2 the right age to start?
 

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Between the ages of 2-3 is a good age to start, yes.
 

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If you're IN DC, the nearest chapter club to you is either MBDPC or the Northern Virginia chapter. I know MBDPC has a holter they'll rent to members for very low cost. I'd consider joining for that alone.
 

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If you're IN DC, the nearest chapter club to you is either MBDPC or the Northern Virginia chapter. I know MBDPC has a holter they'll rent to members for very low cost. I'd consider joining for that alone.
I will be back home (In DC, by the National Cathedral) in February and will join. Thank you for the information!
 

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Mary Jo's boy Harvard will be turning 13 next month. He's heterozygous positive for DCM1/PDK4 and Homozygous Positive for DCM2/TTN. His last echo showed a normal heart.
Another person I know had a bitch live to 15.5 years and had the same combination as Harvard, her last echo at 14 was only just starting to show age-related weakness, but no DCM.
A friend lost a 6yo male to sudden cardiac death last February. He was clear for both genes.
In short, those genes are not predictive, we cannot even reliably determine if those genes increase the risk factor, and at this point all evidence leads to the fact that there is at least one other contributing genetic factor. Not to mention all the unknown epigenetic and environmental factors.

You've gotten good advice on finding/joining a chapter club and doing echo/holter yearly starting at age 2-3. And that goes for every doberman out there, regardless of their DNA results <3
 

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ValkyrieMama
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He's a beauty! Thanks for sharing the Embark results. Did you register with the Doberman Diversity Project? They maintain a database of DNA results to check against any reported health developments in the quest to find new markers and better understand the genes that affect various illnesses or longevity.

I have a 16-1/2 wk old female and while also less sharky now (sometimes) we have a lot further to go with training. Sounds like your boy is doing really well! I look forward to watching him grow up. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Mary Jo's boy Harvard will be turning 13 next month. He's heterozygous positive for DCM1/PDK4 and Homozygous Positive for DCM2/TTN. His last echo showed a normal heart.
Another person I know had a bitch live to 15.5 years and had the same combination as Harvard, her last echo at 14 was only just starting to show age-related weakness, but no DCM.
A friend lost a 6yo male to sudden cardiac death last February. He was clear for both genes.
In short, those genes are not predictive, we cannot even reliably determine if those genes increase the risk factor, and at this point all evidence leads to the fact that there is at least one other contributing genetic factor. Not to mention all the unknown epigenetic and environmental factors.

You've gotten good advice on finding/joining a chapter club and doing echo/holter yearly starting at age 2-3. And that goes for every doberman out there, regardless of their DNA results <3
This is great information and I appreciate you taking the time to weigh in! No guarantees and certainly one more in the + column for regular monitoring!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
He's a beauty! Thanks for sharing the Embark results. Did you register with the Doberman Diversity Project? They maintain a database of DNA results to check against any reported health developments in the quest to find new markers and better understand the genes that affect various illnesses or longevity.

I have a 16-1/2 wk old female and while also less sharky now (sometimes) we have a lot further to go with training. Sounds like your boy is doing really well! I look forward to watching him grow up. :)
Thank you! I think he is pretty cute. Yes, I did register with the DDP. I think the research is fascinating and got Embark as a result of learning about DDP. We are right behind you with the snarky-ness of it all. It is amazing to see how his intelligence grows with each week. Training never stops, right?
 
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I will be back home (In DC, by the National Cathedral) in February and will join. Thank you for the information!
Most welcome! The link is in my signature. I'm no longer a member but the folks running it are good people.
 
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Mary Jo's boy Harvard will be turning 13 next month. He's heterozygous positive for DCM1/PDK4 and Homozygous Positive for DCM2/TTN. His last echo showed a normal heart.
Another person I know had a bitch live to 15.5 years and had the same combination as Harvard, her last echo at 14 was only just starting to show age-related weakness, but no DCM.
Yep, Harvard is da man - haha - almost a teenager! I did Embark on my Mabel recently as I got a good price on it and I did want to know some of the information for a possible future breeding if her heart cooperates in a spring Ultrasound. I didn't like how Embark and UC Davis put too much emphasis on the available Cardiac DNA tests - it is nice info to have, but has not shown to be predictive in real life at all. I recently did the UC Davis DNA testing on my almost 13 year old Harvard as I wanted to know his dings status (he's negative for dings) - I threw in the DCM2 test for fun as it was not developed many years ago when I did the first DCM1 test on him. The warning that came with his Homogenious DCM2 test just cracked me up - they told me he was at high risk of developing DCM. I figure that if he does not have it by now, we are probably good - haha. That said, the last time he had a cardiac ultrasound was a little over a year ago - it was excellent. I opted not to have him done again. At his age, something will get him at some point and it really does not matter anymore what it is IMHO. Hopefully it won't be from running head first into something - he does have age related vision loss.
 
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