AKC Rules on Showing Dog With Cherry Eye Repair - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-22-2010, 04:15 PM Thread Starter
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AKC Rules on Showing Dog With Cherry Eye Repair

Hi all,

This Forum is such a wonderful source of information. Does anyone have a definitive answer on whether AKC rules allow showing a Havanese (or any dog) who has had a repair of cherry eye by the doctor making a small slit and repositioning the gland and securing it? I think the rules on the AKC website are a little hard to interpret and I've heard conflicting views.

Thanks SO much.

Shirley
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-22-2010, 08:52 PM
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Shirley, the problem is that there is only conflict when people interpret. Go straight to the source and you'll see it is very clear and does not need any interpretation. This is taken straight from the AKC web site under the section of Frequently Asked Conformation Questions (emphasis mine):

Quote:
Surgery, Allowable Procedures, Health Reasons

For a dog that is competing in Conformation or Obedience, what health-related surgical procedures are allowed?

Any procedure undertaken strictly to restore the health of a dog would not in itself affect a dog's show eligibility. Such procedures would include but not be limited to:

1. The repair of broken legs, even if such procedures involve the insertion of pins, plates or wires
2. The removal of damaged cartilage
3. The repair of ligaments that have ruptured or been torn
4. Caesarian sections
5. The repair of umbilical hernias
6. The removal of tumors or cysts
7. Gastric torsion/bloat surgery
8. Splenic torsion
9. Tonsillectomy
10. Correction of "Cherry Eye" (when the procedure only involves the gland of the nictitating membrane, and not the membrane itself)

These procedures apply to conformation and obedience.

Also, the Obedience Regulations (Chapter 1, Sect.16), state that dogs whose appearance has been surgically altered to correct a congenital or hereditary defect may participate in Obedience Trials provided that the dogs have been neutered. The AKC does not monitor this, although people in Obedience usually keep an eye on one another to keep everyone honest.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-22-2010, 08:54 PM
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The above quote was taken copied on 2/22/10 from http://www.akc.org/events/conformation/faqs.cfm
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 10:12 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks

Kimberly,

Thanks for the information. I had received this from another source. We took Keeper to the vet this morning and we don't know if he will need the surgery.
Medication is being tried first.

I will tell you that the very good veterinarian we have feels that the AKC is wrong here. Either you disqualify totally from showing any dog that has cherry eye procedures, or you allow the medically accepted surgery now used which is by making a slit, inserting the gland and suturing. The gland is necessary--removing it results in dry eye which must be treated for the life of the dog and may result in blindness in later years.

I must agree with him. Whether we show Keeper or not (it would need to be prior to surgery), depends on what is best for this puppy. We would, of course, abide by AKC rules which are, in this case, silly.

Thanks again.

Shirley
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 10:14 AM
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I don't understand. What is silly about it?
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 10:21 AM
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Maybe there is some confusion as to what the nictitating membrane is?

Here is some more info from WebMD that may be helpful in explaining why you shouldn't need to do anything with the nictitating membrane. My interpretation is that if you need to alter the membrane, maybe there is a bigger cause, which would be reason the dog shouldn't be shown.

Source:http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/nictitati...rd-eyelid-dogs

Quote:
The Nictitating Membrane (Third Eyelid) in Dogs
An opaque third eyelid, normally not seen, may become visible across the front of the eye, in which case the nictitating membrane is protruding. The appearance of the third eyelid indicates that the eyeball has sunken into its socket, or that the eyeball has been pulled back into its socket by spasm of the retractor muscles in response to severe eye pain.

A dog may be born with visible third eyelids, called haws. In the show ring this is often considered undesirable, because it gives the animal a somewhat haggard look. Most breed standards (if they mention it at all) require that the haws be scarcely apparent. The haws are a concern only because they give the dog an unsightly appearance. There is no medical reason to remove the third eyelid just because the haws are visible.

Cherry Eye
There is a tear gland wrapped around the cartilage of the third eyelid that is a major source of tears for the eye. In a dog with cherry eye, the fibrous attachments to the undersurface of the third eyelid are weak. This allows the gland to prolapse, or bulge out from beneath the eyelid, exposing a cherrylike growth that is really a normal-size tear gland. This growth can irritate the surface of the eye and produce recurrent conjunctivitis.

Cherry eye is a congenital defect that occurs most commonly in Cocker Spaniels, Beagles, Boston Terriers, and Bulldogs.

Treatment: Removing the third eyelid or the tear gland seriously interferes with tear production and may result in a dry eye syndrome in breeds so disposed. If the gland is removed, your dog may require artificial tears daily for life. Instead, surgery can be performed that repositions the third eyelid and the tear gland. This corrects the problem while maintaining tear production.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 10:29 AM Thread Starter
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AKC Rule

Hi Kimberly,

I think the AKC should clarify this. It is indeed, silly, if they allow these procedures (cherry eye is on the list) saying that it is strictly for the health of the dog, and then proceed to rule out the current medically accepted procedure. Our vet, who is really a great doctor, will positively not remove the gland since it is necessary to tear production. If you research the 'fix' for cherry eye, I think you'd find this to be true. So, if there is something about this procedure that changes the picture, it should be explained or cherry eye should be a disqualifier.

Shirley
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 10:32 AM
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Maybe you really should call AKC for clarification, because I certainly don't read that portion of the rules as saying they are advocating removal of the gland. In fact, they don't specify anything about what is being done to the gland at all, so why are you assuming they mean removal?
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 11:46 AM Thread Starter
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Not an Assumption

Kimberly,

Our dog's breeder, who I consider a very good one, got this information from her circle of breeder friends who said that only the removal of the gland is being accepted.

I'd love to call AKC--how do you do that?

Shirley
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 12:40 PM
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Go to AKC.org to get the phone number. It is on their contact page.
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