Vwd ( Von Willebrand's Disease )
Is an autosomal recessive inherited bleeding disorder that is common in Doberman Pinschers. Seldom hive I ever know a dog that died of Vwd, but it is the only test that give us "for sure" results by testing. These are the three possible test results:
Clear: this finding indicates that the gene is not present in your dog. The dog can not pass on the gene or disorder.
Carrier: This finding indicates that one of the gene is present in your dog, but the dog will not exhibit the disease symptoms. Carriers will not have medical problems as a result of Vwd. They can pass on the gene 50% of the time.
Affected: This indicates that two copies of the gene are present. This dog will always pass on the gene. This dog could have the potential to bleed given the right circumstances.
Here is a chart that show you results of breeding knowing the Vwd status:
Clear Female Clear Male Carrier Male Affected Male
100 % Clear 50/50 100 % Carrier
Carrier Female 50/50 Clear/Carrier 25/50/25 50/50
Affected Female 100 % 50/50 100 % Affected
In studies by George Brewer at the University of Michigan Medical School and co-founder of VenGen LLC, he estimates that about 15 % of Dobermans are clear of the disease. He states, that the problems facing Doberman breeders is that breeding only clear to clear, narrows the breeding pool so much that there is a risk losing some of the Doberman's genetic heritage, some of the genes determining valuable positive characteristics of
Doberman might be lost, or highly deleted. He further states that "most of the affected live normal lives." He further states that the test will assist the breeder in gradually reducing the affected in the Dobermans carry the Vwd gene and reducing the gene pool this much may not be positive. Vwd is only one item that gives breeders a way to look into the genotype of the puppies with sure results.
The goal in testing for Vwd is to eventually eliminate Vwd in all our dogs by testing. This takes generations because if you only breed clear dog to clear dog, you reduce the gene pool. In addition, there are clear dogs that do not have longevity in their lines or do not have characteristics that makes the Doberman a working dog, nor have the temperament we believe is vital. The characteristics of the dog, the temperament, and the longevity of the parents can not be over looked just because a dog is clear, does not mean it does not bring other health issues or is superior. Vwd is just one piece to the puzzle. It is the only genetic test that will give you complete results of the dam and sire. It will also give you the possible results of the puppies produce. It is rare that a puppy would die of Vwd.
There are much worse things in the breed than Vwd. No animal is perfect and far less of a problem in the breed than dropping dead of heart problems, not having property temperament, or not having the confirmation to perform the job it was bred to do.