Some time back we were following the story of Ella, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, who was suffering from syringomyelia.
Syringomyelia is a painful neurological disease which can occur as a complication of trauma, inflammation or a tumor. However, the most common cause is dogs is hereditary skull malformation, Chiari-like Malformation (CM). It is very common in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels but it can affect other toy breeds.
A study, conducted at the University of Bristol's School of Veterinary Sciences identified the head shape characteristics associated with these diseases.
The idea is to enable selection away from these condition.
Two significant risk factors were found.
The extent of the broadness of the top of skull relative to its length, also referred to as brachycephaly, and the distribution of doming of the skull.
The study suggests that brachycephaly, with resulting doming towards the front of the head, is associated with CM/SM.
Will all breeders (finally) take a hint?
Skull shape risk factors could help in welfare of toy dog breeds
The Dark Cloud Of Syringomyelia: Fight For Ella
Ella's MRI Results And Update
Fight For Ella Continues
Syringomyelia Awareness: What is Chiari Malformation?
Syringomyelia Awareness: Teddy’s Story