Painful joint disease in dogs can be passed on to the offspring of that dog. It is important for the health of the offspring that we identify diseases that can be passed on and eliminate dogs with those diseases from breeding. In order to insure that your dog has healthy hip and elbow joints prior to breeding, it is important that the dog undergo the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) certification. The certification requires x-rays (also called ‘radiographs’) of both hips and elbows to rule out hip and elbow dysplasia. At Riverview Animal Clinic, we utilize the OFA-approved x-ray views for evaluation of both hip and elbow joints and we will submit the x-rays to the OFA for you. OFA analysis of the x-rays takes roughly a week. If your dog passes the certification, it can be considered for breeding. If your dog does not pass, spay or castration of that dog should be considered.
Because the hips and elbows must be stretched and extended, it is more comfortable for your dog to be sedated prior to the x-rays. We use the OFA-approved sedation techniques, which not only allow your dog to relax and be comfortable, but also allows us to take more accurate images of the joints. Although general anesthesia is not required for this process, we can take the x-rays during general anesthesia while your pet is anesthetized for another procedure.