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This post is inspired by the difficulty I had in figuring out the best way to get Stella's CHIC#. If I hadn't had the benefit of having a friend (that I met through Poodle Forum none-the-less :) ! ) I doubt I would have been able to do so. For me the whole process seemed overwhelming and complex, because I didn't even know which tests I wanted to have done and certainly didn't know where to have them done! When I would search online most of the specific how-to information I would find was for other breeds, and I wanted to leave an online record for others who are seeking to get testing completed for their Spoo.
So I started my research by contacting my regular vet. Unfortunately most vets don't deal with breed-specific tests so they just recommended I contact VA Tech(I'm in VA) . While they certainly COULD do the tests; I don't recommend using a veterinary college to get the testing done because it's going to be a lot more expensive and depending on travel distance it can be difficult to arrange everything. Quite a bit of time passed before I started searching again because as I mentioned above it seemed so complicated and my initial research did nothing to simplify things! But once I met my friend she was able to help steer me in the right direction.
I began by doing the two genetic tests recommended by the PCA. I was able to have the NEwS done directly by the OFA. I ordered a testing kit off of their website: https://www.ofa.org/diseases/dna-tested-diseases/neonatal-encephalopathy-with-seizures
Followed the directions and sent it off! Pretty much everything the OFA does takes a few weeks so don't expect to get things done sooner than a month.
The same day I ordered a DNA testing kit from VetNostic for the vWD-Type 1. VetNostic is one of the companies OFA accepts DNA results from and had the best price for the single test. Once again I just followed the directions and mailed it off. I got the results via email and later submitted them to OFA, but more on that later. I did those two genetic tests because they are the ones recommended by PCA for standards. Stella is cleared by parentage for other things, but I didn't have the paperwork proof and wanted to have it on hand to show any potential owners that may get a puppy from Stella. If she wasn't cleared by parentage I would have pursued getting a DNA testing panel, but don't know which company would be best for that.
My friend also gave me the biggest tip I can pass on, and that is, GO TO A DOG SHOW! I was able to have Stella's eyes and heart testing done at dog shows for far, far less than an appointment at a specialist. I ended up having to go to two different AKC shows(Another tip: Go early in the AM or after lunch!), and both of them were open to the public. No appointment necessary; just go and find the health clinic area. I don't think they would turn you away based on registration. This could be a good idea for anyone who needed to have their dog checked for eye or heart problems; not just breeders. It is only heart auscultation though; so that might have limited value for people needing to have their dog's heart checked, idk .
For having hips tested I would recommend doing an online search for vets that are PennHip certified in your area. Another way to search could be to search recommendations for vets on dog forums. I ended up finding the vet I used because he was highly recommended on a Lab forum. Since so many breed clubs recommend hip testing it should be possible to find one that way. I went with Dr. Amos at Big Lick Veterinary Services in Roanoke, VA
( https://biglickvet.com/ofapennhip/ ). He is PennHip certified, and the whole staff was very knowledgeable and so wonderful to work with. The receptionist that emailed me back with an estimate has done the testing with her own dogs so she really knew what she was talking about. And they had the best pricing which shocked me. I went with the OFA method of testing but I decided to try to find someone that was PennHip certified because they are specifically trained in how to take the X-rays. Since positioning can be such a make-it-or-break-it thing with OFA I wanted to give Stella the best chance I could.
So that is what I did. The thyroid testing can be done at a regular vet's office because it is sent off to the OFA approved lab for the testing. You can go on the OFA site to learn more. I'm unsure about how to find a good vet for the Sebaceous Adentitis testing. My friend attempted to find one in our area but didn't have very much luck. The one place she did find wanted to do 6(!) punches so she decided not to pursue it.
When I submitted the vWD-1, eye, and heart forms I submitted them together, which meant that the submittal fees were only $7.50 each instead of $12-$15 each. To submit the vWD results I printed out the results that had been emailed to me by VetNostic and also the OFA submittal form, found here: https://www.ofa.org/pdf/dnaapp_bw.pdf . I filled it out and mailed it together with the heart and eye forms (they are in triplicate and are provided by the vets) in a USPS envelope with tracking (cost me ~$7). The vet that does the hip X-ray typically sends in the form for you, and I made things simplier the day of by printing and filling out the form ahead of time. Form found here: https://www.ofa.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/hdedapp_bw.pdf . I must also note that to get a CHIC# your dog has to be permanently identified. Stella's breeder had all the puppies microchipped before going to their new homes, so I didn't have to deal with that, but it IS something to be aware of.

So here's a cost breakdown:
NEwS- $65
vWD-Type 1 - $65
Eye - $40
Heart- $40
Hips- Estimate was $270 for an OFA X-ray(just the hips), but it ended up only costing me $150. Idk why, and neither did the receptionist when I asked her. And yes, I did have the sedation done.
OFA submittal fees for DNA test/Heart/Eye sent together- $22.50
USPS mailing cost- ~$7
OFA Hip submittal fee- $35

I hope this can assist anyone else who is looking for specific information on this process :) . And also, here is the link to the PCA page on recommended testing: https://www.poodleclubofamerica.org/images/HEALTH/Health_Screening_in_Poodles_2016.pdf
 

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Discussion Starter #2
OFA Hip Testing Estimate

I thought it would be helpful to see the estimate break-down that I was sent. Plus it gives the pricing for the PennHip testing; which some people prefer. So here it is:

I apologize for the delay, I have been out of the office. Thanks for contacting us about OFA and PennHip radiographs for your Standard Poodle. We do not require sedation for OFA films, but have learned that we can't get as good of positioning without sedation. We will generally take a few shots of the hips so we can be sure to send the most correct positioning possible. PennHip is different from OFA in that sedation is required for PennHip. PennHip also requires 3 views of the pelvis: distracted view, compressed view, and extended VD view. The extended VD is the same position required for OFA Hips, so the two can easily overlap. Dr. Amos is the veterinarian certified in PennHip here at Big Lick Vet, and he does our OFA films, too. The cost will vary based on whether you do PennHip and/or OFA. I have listed details below.

If we have never seen your dog, we will need to perform an exam. If you are only requesting OFA Hips, then the cost would be about $270 with sedation. We ask that you be prepared to submit a separate payment for the OFA fee by either writing a check to OFA that we would send to OFA or by filling out the OFA Hips application form with payment information for the OFA fee.

Exam: $50
Sedation: $72-$87 (based on the weight on your dog)
1 X-ray View: $96
OFA fee: $35

If you are wanting additional radiographs, such as OFA Elbows, then the cost would change based on the number of views. I would be happy to provide you with more details if this is something you are considering.

For PennHip, the cost is $320 plus the $50 examination if we have never seen your dog. Unlike OFA, the PennHip submission/application fee is included in the total. If you would like to do PennHip and OFA Hips, then it would cost about $405. If you would like PennHip without OFA, then you can expect the total to be about $370.

Exam: $50
PennHip (sedation and fee included): $320
OFA fee: $35 (this is only if you want both PennHip and OFA Hips)

Regarding dates, we prefer to do OFA and PennHip radiographs on Thursdays, sometimes we can make it work for a Monday or a Wednesday, but Thursdays tend to work best. I hope this answers all your questions, but if not, please to hesitate to ask!

Stephanie Rudderow
Veterinary Assistant
Big Lick Veterinary Services
540-776-0700
 
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