Canine Degenerative Myelopathy DNA Test

Test Highlights:

  • DNA samples can be collected easily at home using buccal (cheek) swabs.
  • Dogs can be DNA tested at ANY age using the buccal swabs.
  • DNA results are emailed within 5 business days of receipt of the samples
  • Test fee is $58 (US) per canine, multi-test discounts may apply

Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) Test

Canine Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) is a devastating degenerative disease of the spinal cord that can progress rapidly and cause weakness in the hind limbs and eventually paraplegia among genotypically-affected dogs.

Our buccal-swab DNA test is an accurate, convenient, and affordable tool to help breeders avoid producing DM at-risk offspring and significantly reduce the gene frequency in future generations.

This test, which uses the SOD1-A marker, is available for all dog breeds, Initially, this inherited recessive disorder was thought to only affect German Shepherd Dogs; however, degenerative myelopathy has been recently diagnosed in several other dog breeds.

Please note: We do not test for the SOD1-B marker found in Bernese Mountain Dogs. It’s been known for several years that the Bernese have this additional marker/risk factor that is generally restricted to the breed. This is not to say that this marker is the sole cause of DM in that breed or that the SOD1-A mutation is irrelevant as a risk factor in the breed.

DDC Veterinary’s DNA test reveals one of the 3 possible genotypes for degenerative myelopathy:

  • CLEAR (those having 2 copies of the normal allele and appear to be normal).
  • CARRIER (those having 1 copy of the normal allele and 1 copy of the mutation and most appear to be normal).
  • AT RISK (those having 2 copies of the mutation and will likely show clinical signs.)