Genetic correlations of hip dysplasia scores for Golden retrievers and Labrador retrievers in France, Sweden and the UK

Wang S, Leroy G, Malm S, Lewis T, Viklund Å5 Strandberg E, Fikse WF. Vet J. 2017 Aug ;226: 51-56.

In order to reduce the prevalence of inherited diseases in pedigree dogs, the feasibility of implementation of an international breeding program was investigated. One prerequisite is a strong genetic correlation between countries and our objective was to estimate this correlation for canine hip dysplasia (HD) across three countries to evaluate the feasibility of an international genetic evaluation.

Data were provided by the Société Centrale Canine (SCC, France), Svenska Kennelklubben (SKK, Sweden) and The Kennel Club (KC, UK) on Golden retriever and Labrador retriever dogs. Trivariate analysis on the three different modes of scoring HD in France, Sweden and the UK was performed using a mixed linear animal model. Heritability, genetic correlation, number of common sires, genetic similarity, selection differentials and accuracy of selection were calculated.

The estimated heritabilities of Golden retrievers (Labrador retrievers) for HD scores were 0.28 (0.15), 0.28 (0.29) and 0.41 (0.34) in France, Sweden and the UK, respectively. The feasibility of performing a genetic evaluation of HD across countries was indicated by the favourable genetic correlations estimated between score modes (ranged from 0.48 to 0.99).

The accuracy of selection for the most recent birth year cohorts of male dogs was not improved by international evaluation compared to national evaluation. Improvement in genetic progress can however be achieved by selection across populations in different countries, particularly for small populations, which were indicated by the large difference between selection differentials based on the national and international evaluations.

Small animal: