Bully Carrier Question

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Bully Carrier Question

Postby tumble+more » Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:12 am

I understand that a lot of the racing breeders are doing testing for the bully gene in order not to breed two carriers together. However, it appears that carriers are still being bred to non-carriers. I'm curious -- when you breed a carrier to a non-carrier can some of the puppies still end up being carriers of the bully gene?

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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby sdwhippets » Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:15 am

Yes, they can be carriers but are not bullies. Breeding normal to normal, you get all normal puppies. Breeding carrier to normal you can get either carrier pups and/or normal pups
Last edited by sdwhippets on Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby piedane » Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:17 am

I am assuming that this is like most heritable diseases.
Carrier to carrier = carrier
carrier to clear = clear & carrier

I am pretty sure that the Bully gene takes 2 copies of the gene to make it affected. So as long as people are breeding their carriers to clear there shouldn't be a problem.

Again.. I am not 100% sure but I think this is correct.
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby sdwhippets » Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:22 am

I think this is the basic 'breakdown"

clear to clear = clear
clear to carrier = clear and/or carriers
clear to affected = carriers
carrier to carrier = clear, carriers and/or affected
carrier to affected = carriers and/or affected
affected to affected = affected
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby tumble+more » Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:33 am

Hmmm, interesting. So that answer leads me to my next question ... why continue breeding a carrier if the gene continues? Isn't the goal to get rid of the gene completely?
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby StarSpangledAndale » Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:48 am

No. The goal is to produce the dogs that are the best representatives of the type of dog you are trying to produce.

Now that we know how "affected" dogs are produced, breeders can avoid producing them. If you avoid breeding a carrier to a carrier, you can avoid producing an "affected" dog. With judicious breeding, there is no need to exclude all carriers from the gene pool. I believe the "expected" percentage breakdown is like this:

non carrier to non carrier----> 100% non carriers
non carrier to a carrier -----> 50% carriers 50% non carriers
carrier to a carrier -----> 25% non carriers 25% affected 50% carriers

Whether or not you breed a bitch that is a carrier or breed a non carrier bitch to a carrier is a personal decision. Some people want carriers because they believe they are faster dogs.

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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby sdwhippets » Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:57 am

Ditto what Karen said. I don't believe you need to exclude all carriers from the gene pool, so long as breeders are testing and being responsible, we can breed clears and carriers but avoid producing affected dogs. I myself don't believe that carriers have any real advantage on the race track over non-carriers, I think it just depends on the dog, currently the top 2 NOTRA dogs are both clear and #3 is a carrier. I have sisters, one a carrier and one a clear, but I wouldn't say one is faster than the other. They are both pretty close speed wise, one is a little better on the oval than the other but that's due to her railing better.
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby Swiftcreek_Hounds » Tue Oct 25, 2011 2:15 am

Sadly though, not all people are careful, nor do some do the testing. I would not breed a carrier because you may not have 100% control over the offspring. What if you sold an N/B on a no breeding contract, and they bred anyway and got bullies? I wouldn't want that blood on my hands, so to speak. There are more bullies around than you think.
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby sdwhippets » Tue Oct 25, 2011 2:20 am

There is a VERY big debate in some of the European countries as to eliminating or preventing the Carrier dogs from racing and breeding and I think they either A. do not understand that these dogs have no real advantage when it comes to racing or B. just are not well informed! If you look at the dogs in the US that are and have been ranked #1 and are deemed the "faster" dogs - they are CLEAR dogs. IMO Carrier dogs hold no real speed advantage, no more than normal. As breeders and competitors become better educated on conditioning/nutrition/breeding etc... it only stands to reason you will get faster dogs - over the years race horses and even human runners, have gotten faster. Being able to eliminate producing "Bullies" was a big positive step forward, now we have to educate people that you test your dogs and you breed anything that is an asset to the breed that is a carrier, to a clear!!

Annie - if you sold an N/B on a no breeding contract ( just like a companion dog) you sell it with LIMITED papers which makes it impossible for them to register the get!! Or you do not turn over the papers to them until the dogs are spayed/neutered if you felt strongly enough about it - there are ways to control that factor.
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby Torkelle Dobes » Tue Oct 25, 2011 2:22 am

This is just a simple DNA swab test is it not? Where does one obtain this test from? What is the current cost?

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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby sdwhippets » Tue Oct 25, 2011 2:22 am

Annie - just how many bullies (exactly) do you know of and how OLD are they? My guess is if you look at their age - they were born before the MD test was developed.
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby sdwhippets » Tue Oct 25, 2011 2:23 am

Yes, just simple DNA Cheek swabs that you obtain from the DDC (no need to test show bred dogs)
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby whippets65 » Tue Oct 25, 2011 2:24 am

Just as a clarification - the last 3 posts from Krys were actually from ME:) I didn't log her out (she hates that!!)
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby bushbaby4 » Tue Oct 25, 2011 3:41 am

This is a very controversial issue but the fact remains that the bully gene is ONLY present in racing whippets and not show whippets so there is DEFINITELY a correlation with speed. The gene has been artificially selected for over and over and over.... whether people realize it or not. There are obviously other genes or loci on that same gene that also contribute to speed. My guess would be that speed is a multiple allelic trait.
I am curious..... does anyone know where this gene came from and how it was introduced into ONLY the racing whippets? I have some ideas but was wondering if there is any data or records on the introduction of this mutated gene into American whippet racing. DId it surface in the 70's, 80's,90's??? When was this gene first documented in American-bred whippets? Who bred/owned the first whippet carriers or bullies? It would be an interesting read, that's for certain!
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby Cogshall » Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:23 am

I think that as long as we keep breeding carriers of a genetic deformity it will come back to haunt us. I am sure many other breeds with serious issues started out saying we can control it. It can't be controled because you can't control all people and their actions. I do not believe that we should continue carrying this in our breed. Hindsight is always easier but this issues seems pretty clear to me. Isn't it our responsibility to the breed to try to not continue on with known breed defects? The best representatives of the breed to me are not dogs with a genetic defect. I don't get the stand that it is okay to breed carriers. I just don't.
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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby lvernon » Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:44 am

It's a mutation of a gene. It can happen again, which I why I get my proverbial panties in a knot when breeders don't test dogs from a clearXclear breeding because the offsprinig should all be clear. In theory, yes they should be, however mistakes have happened with testing, and the original mutation came from somewhere. Test every dog that is being bred, it's $50 and only needs to be done once in the dog's lifetime. The more results we get the more the test will be "proofed".

Eliminating all carriers from the breeding pool would take some excellent producers out of circulation. Throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby StarSpangledAndale » Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:18 am

Another thing to make clear is that it is not just present in the North America racing whippet. It has appeared several times in Europe also. From parents assumed to be clear.

I think it is a very personal decision whether to breed from or to a carrier. If all produce of all carriers were carriers, then absolutely, do not breed them. But they aren't. And the gene pool is so small already, I do believe to throw all carriers out would not be ideal. I can't say I would NEVER breed to or from a carrier. All of my dogs happen to be clear, which gives me a different outlook than someone who has a carrier.

A carrier doesn't have health issues. Only "affecteds" do. It's not a mutation that is in itself a health issue.

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Re: Bully Carrier Question

Postby co2tww » Tue Oct 25, 2011 12:02 pm

I think we need to look at the whole picture and not just our breed. What happens to these carriers when they are bred to other breeds and produce mixed carriers which then in turn are bred from and eventually you get two mixed carriers that are bred, they will in turn produce a bully mix. This can and will happen. I predict it won't be long before a bully gene mix is produced, no??
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