New research finds over-breeding is causing some puppies' health to fail. The study from Sweden suggests some dogs carry a large amount of potentially harmful genes. Of those studied the Cavalier King Charles spaniel is most at risk. The Uppsala University team have sequenced the genes of twenty dogs from eight common breeds, including Beagles, German shepherds, Golden Retrievers and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, the later carrying more harmful genetic variants than other breeds, due to a small gene pool.
Two genetic variants were linked to a heart condition common in the breed. Erik Axelsson and his team at Uppsala University published these new findings in the journal PLOS Genetics. Erik speaks with Lynn Freeman.