Bernese Mountain Dog Club of America
Contact the BMDCA Health Committee Chair
♦ LINKS ♦
· AKC CHF
· ECR (was CERF)
· Health Articles
· Health Clinics
· UC Davis-Histiocytosis
· Cornell-Hip Dysplasia
· Cornell-Companion Health
· Dogs & Ticks
· Pat Long's Site
♦ BMDCA BREEDERS ♦
The Pearson Fund is named in memory of Elizabeth Pearson and in tribute to Roger Pearson, who dedicated so much of their time and themselves to the betterment of our breed. The Health Committee would also like to acknowledge and thank Karyn Beyer for her passionate efforts creating the concept of this fund and enlisting fellow (passionate) resources to execute this vision. The pilot version of the Pearson Fund has been established for the purpose of assisting Berner owners with the costs of necropsy and/or tissue collection and pathological diagnosis of specific genetic based diseases. The Fund will be used to reimburse up to $500 of the cost of approved procedures.
The collection and proper diagnosis of both Histiocytic Sarcoma (HS) and Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) are critical for ongoing research to benefit our breed and investigate health issues that affect our dogs. The actual collection and submission of tissue samples for diagnostic testing at the time of death are often a challenge for emotionally drained or bereaved owners — the process is sometimes complicated and often very expensive (particularly for the collection of spinal cord tissue). Many owners have already expended considerable financial resources just caring for the dog and are not financially able to spend yet more money on activities that essentially constitute a donation. Various health research projects in our breed require detailed information and data, and the Pearson Fund will help to provide the BMDCA with a unique opportunity to assist both the researchers and the owners in furthering the gathering of critical information.
Pathology of tumor tissue in Bernese is often detailed to be HS on the pathology report, but when the tumor tissue is later reviewed by researchers, it is actually found to have been lymphoma. When pathology is done, additional staining can also be performed to verify specific types of cancer. Having this extra verification of the diagnosis can help with treatment determination as well as to improve the information about HS in our breed.
While we now have genetic tests for two mutations found on the SOD1 gene which are associated with DM, we still don't know how many of the at-risk dogs with two mutated copies of the gene will actually get the disease. Necropsies for all at-risk dogs would help us learn more about the penetrance of this disease, and allow breeders to make more informed breeding selections.
Initial funding of $10,000 from the BMDCA Health Fund