Pulmonary Lens Luxation (PLL)
The test is done by the OFFA and it costs $65.
I have read extensively about PLL and I find this article is a good summary of all the information I have read. For me in my reading of this article a key point is made here in this paragragh. "A very common disease";
About 27% of Jack Russells are carriers of the mutation. A dog develops the disease if it carries two mutated copies of the gene. BOTH parents need to be carriers for the pups to have the possibility of developing the disease. The "heterozygous" dog (healthy carrier) carries a normal copy and one mutated copy of the gene: it does not develop the disease, but it transmits the mutation to 50% of its offspring.
By spending $65 and testing all our dogs and by responsible breeding we can ensure that this disease does not affect our jacks.
Inadequate screening in the breed led to spread the mutation, and to increase the number of carriers without notice of the breeders, veterinarians.
"As the disease is common in the Jack Russell Terrier, it is strongly recommended not to exclude from reproduction heterozygous dogs (carriers) at risk of losing genetic diversity in the breed, ameliorative features many stud dogs and brood bitches and to let other genetic problems emerge.
As long as breeders test their stud dogs and brood bitches, they can easily assure buyers that their Jack Russell Terrier puppies will not develop this lens luxation, common in the breed."
I think it is a huge mistake for breeders to eliminate all carriers from their lines as by doing so they may be eliminating some of their best dogs and they may unintentionally be shrinking the diversity of the gene pool. A limited gene pool is what can cause many genetic issues for a breed.
Please, wherever you choose to buy your next Jack pup, choose from a responsible, knowledgeable and kind breeder.
Some of my favorite, old Irish lines, are PLL carriers. Through responsible breeding I can ensure I continue this line of beautiful, healthy and special jacks. To discontinue this line would be a big loss to Irish shorty jacks in America, as they are some of the best there are.
Spinocerebellar Ataxia (SCA)
Here is a link to give you some information on SCA, all of my dogs have also been tested for this.
Please note: None of my dogs have ever had any issue with either PLL or SCA. We do this testing to prevent there ever being an issue with it in our bloodlines.
I have to say I have been extremely fortunate with my bloodlines, they are very hearty and healthy. But any health concern or even minor imperfections all get my attention and I am always striving to breed the healthiest line of Jacks possible. I encourage and appreciate feedback. We are so confident in our lines that we now offer a 6 year health guarantee, which to the best of my knowledge is one of the best guarantees any breeder offers.
As we all know, diet, exercise, overall healthcare are vital to ensure long-term health, we do our part and we need our MBF families to do theirs too.