Karmadi English Springer Spaniels


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PRA DNA test for English Springer Spaniels!

At Karmadi, I am committed to continue my quest to produce the healthiest dog I can, for you the buyer.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), an autosomal recessive inherited disease, is a degeneration of the layers of the retina that are responsible for vision. The disease is progressive, eventually resulting in blindness. 

In the past, the only way we (breeders) knew our lines were clear of the hereditary disease PRA, was to do eye exams on all of our breeding dogs from 8 weeks of age and then annually for life.


With the news of the new PRA test that was made available (Apr 2007), I can now be certain that the puppies I produce will never develop PRA.

In order to develop PRA, a dog must inherit two copies of the defective PRA gene; one from its dam, one from its sire.



Dogs will fall into three categories:

NORMAL: Dog has inherited two normal genes.  'Normal; dogs will not develop this form of PRA, and can safely be bred to any dog.

CARRIERS: Dog has inherited one 'normal' gene and one PRA mutant gene.   'Carrier' dogs are not at risk to develop the disease.

AFFECTED: Dog has inherited two mutant PRA genes.  Dogs are at risk for developing PRA at some point in their lifetime.



The defective PRA gene can be eliminated from a breeding line by adhering to the following:
  •  'Carrier' or 'affected' dogs can be bred to 'normal' dogs  without producing affected offspring.

  • 'Affected' dogs can be bred to 'normal' dogs: their progeny will all be 'carriers'.

  • 'Carrier' pups can be bred again to 'normal' dogs.



Expected breeding results for  inherited recessive diseases:

  Parent 2
Parent 1 Normal Carrier Affected
Normal All=Normal 1/2=Normal













All=Carriers 1/2=Carriers



*It is important never to breed two carrier dogs, because on average 25% of the pups could be affected. One parent should always be clear/normal for the disease




According to the ESSFTA (English Springer Spaniel Field Trial Association) as of April 2007:

  • The percentage of English Springer Spaniels testing as affected or carrier for this mutation is very high.

  • only 20% of the 1100-plus ESSís genotyped during the research tested as clear, or normal.

  • Eliminating all dogs testing as affected would have a major impact on the breed and would have the potential to devastate successful breeding programs.

All Karmadi breeding dogs have been tested for PRA.  My PRA 'carriers' will only be bred to 'normal' dogs.  All resulting offspring will either be 'carriers' or 'normal', eliminating the risk of PRA.


All of my future puppies will only test 'carrier' or 'normal' for PRA-meaning they will NOT be at risk for developing this type of PRA.   




We will continue to do eye exams on all of our puppies at 8 weeks of age and annual eye exams on our breeding dogs, (as we have always done).  This helps us to ensure that our  dogs do not have any other eye disorders, which means a healthier puppy for you, the buyer.




At Karmadi we do the following certifications on all of our breeding stock:

  • 8-9 week eye exam and then yearly

  • Hip and Elbow Certification

  • Heart Certification

  • OFA Thyroid   

  • PRA test

 I am committed to improving our breed, so from here forward, future Karmadi puppies will not be at risk of developing PRA.

We will always promote any new tests made available for our beloved breed.



 PRA information:

ESSFTA--English Springer Spaniel Field Trial Association (AKC Parent Club) 

 Canine Genetic Diseases Network

Optigen:  Frequently asked questions about PRA.




2000-2004 2005-Now

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Karmadi English Springer Spaniels

Diane & Carmen Herns

2839 Ardoch Road, Clarendon

Ontario, Canada  K0H 1J0


(613) 464-0269




Karmadi English Springer Spaniels


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