Breeders of Working Cocker Spaniels
Thanks for stopping by. My name is Helene Hookway and for the past few years I have bred Working Cocker Spaniels under the guise of Meadowcocker.
Having been brought up around dogs and other animals from the start, I have always adored the companionship that these faithful creatures offer their owners. It was always my intention to work with animals, yet this dream only became a reality having been made redundant in 2009 and I was given the opportunity of following my dream and concentrate on breeding this fabulous breed and to set up my dog grooming business (Clips 'n' Chips) offering full grooming facilities to Cocker Spaniels and all other breeds including microchipping of cats, dogs and other small furries.
Fully qualified with Peddymark as an implanter, all pets are logged on the Kennel Club managed database.
Wanting to ensure all the puppies that were bred here had the best lines possible, I endeavoured to gain Kennel Club Assured Breeder status by all the bitches being PRA (Progressive Retinal Atrophy)* and FN (Familial Nephropathy)** tested to prevent the degeneration of the breed and also the BVA/KC/International Sheep Dog Society (ISDS) Eye Scheme***, which offers breeders the possibility of eye testing to screen for inherited eye disease in certain breeds.
Have a look around and get to know my dogs and me.
* prcd-PRA causes cells in the retina at the back of the eye to degenerate and die, even though the cells seem to develop normally early in life. Owners of affected dogs first notice that their dog becomes night blind, but this eventually progresses to total blindness. The age of onset of first signs varies from breed to breed, however, in all cases puppies are born with perfect vision and their sight begins to degenerate later in life, from around 3 years of age or later. The condition results from a single recessive mutation of a gene known as prcd.
** Familial Nephropathy is inherited as a single recessive mutation. FN has also been referred to in several ways: kidney failure, fatal renal disease, juvenile nephropathy, renal cortical hypoplasia, hereditary nephritis (HN), Autosomal Hereditary Recessive Nephropathy (AHRN) in canines and Alport's Syndrome in humans. The renal disease caused by FN invariably is progressive and ultimately fatal; however, the rate of disease progression observed in affected dogs is more rapid in some individuals than in others. Dogs with FN typically develop chronic renal failure between 6 months and 2 years of age, with eventual and sometimes rapid destruction of both kidneys. The early clinical signs are the same as those associated with chronic renal failure due to any other cause. These include excessive water consumption, excessive urine volume, reduced growth rate or weight loss, poor quality hair coat, reduced appetite, and vomiting. Persistent high levels of protein in the urine of a young dog most often proves to be due to FN.
*** BVA/KC/International Sheep Dog Society (ISDS) Eye Scheme, which offers breeders the possibility of eye testing to screen for inherited eye disease in certain breeds.
By screening breeding stock for these diseases, breeders can use the information to eliminate or reduce the frequency of eye disease being passed on to puppies. At the centre of the scheme are two schedules: Schedule A and Schedule B.
Schedule A contains a list of breeds and eye conditions that are known to be inherited in those breeds. Under the Eye scheme one of a specialist group of canine ophthalmologists (the Eye Panel) examines a dog to look for clinical signs of inherited disease known to affect the breed in question. If no clinical signs are noted for these diseases, then the dog is declared ‘unaffected’; if signs consistent with one or more Schedule A conditions, then the dog will be declared ‘affected’ for the relevant disease. These results are passed to the KC for inclusion in the tested dog’s registration database. Only the results of Schedule A examinations are available to the Health Test Result Finder. List of breeds and conditions on Schedule A:
Schedule B is a list of breeds and conditions which are suspected of being inherited in those breeds. The panellists’ observations on Schedule B conditions are noted and returned to the BVA, but these results are not passed to the KC and so the results of Schedule B examinations are not available to the Health Test Result Finder. List of breeds and conditions on Schedule B: http://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/download/11217/scheduleb.pdf
In general, it is recommended that eyes are examined annually (except for glaucoma predisposition which is only done once by gonioscopy), with the advice given to breeders to only breed from dogs that are found to be unaffected (or clear) of all known conditions in the breed.