Completed Health Projects



AIM – This survey is directly linked to the Heart Study and aims to determine the current prevalence and incidence of DCM  and sudden death in Deerhounds. 

BENEFITS – Survey will generate more data to determine the significance of DCM in the Deerhound breed which will be used to focus future research into causes, diagnosis and treatment of DCM.

PROGRESS – This survey has now closed. A presentation of the initial findings was presented to members at the 2018 Breed Show. Full reporting is anticipated late 2018/Spring 2019.  


AIM – The Royal Veterinary College is working to establish the effectiveness and safety of a novel diet in the management of dogs with idiopathic epilepsy who are currently being treated with phenobarbitone and/or potassium bromide. This is a general study for all dogs breeds and Deerhounds are invited to participate.

BENEFITS – Potentially this study may help improve the management of epileptic dogs in general. Epilepsy is not common in the Deerhound breed but the limited number affected could potentially be helped by reducing seizure frequency, but also by decreasing the level of side-effects seen with standard antiepileptic drugs.

PROGRESS – To confirm the efficacy of this new diet the RVC are currently recruiting  dogs which are suspected of having idiopathic epilepsy.

FUTURE PLANS -  Dogs selected to take part in the study will receive an investigation by RVC neurologists and undergo diagnostic tests.

HOW CAN MEMBERS GET INVOLVED – Epilepsy is not common in the Deerhound breed, but anyone who has encountered this, may like to join this RVC research programme. If your Deerhound does have epilepsy please contact The Clinical Investigation Centre, Royal Veterinary College, Hawkshead Lane, North Mymms, Hertfordshire AL9 7TA. Tel: +44 (0) 1707 666605, Email: to get involved.  


Information article from the Royal Veterinary College here



AIM – The Health Group are working with Queen’s Veterinary School Hospital (Cambridge University) to survey club members to help determine the incidence of PSS in Deerhounds and to compare that with other breeds.

BENEFITS – This survey will help determine if there is an increased occurrence of PSS in Deerhounds which could help support further work to examine why this is the case and possible ways of treatment or prevention in the future. This historical survey work is complementary to the current on-going data being collected in the PSS Testing work with Capital Diagnostics.

PROGRESS – The survey has now been completed and the full report is available below.

CONCLUSIONS - Worldwide the prevalence of shunts (in Deerhounds) was found to be 0.8% while the prevalence in the UK and the USA was found to be 1.1% and 0.4% respectively. 71% of breeders worldwide were found to test routinely for cPSS in their puppies while the proportion in the UK and the USA was 96% and 48% respectively. In conclusion the prevalence of cPSS in Deerhounds found in this study is higher than has been found for mixed-breed dogs, both in the UK and the USA. This suggests a genetic component of the disease in Deerhounds and the need for continued testing.


The full survey article by Lydia Kerridge is available here




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