Which Of The Following Shows The Flow Of Genetic Information Understanding Genetic Disease in German Shorthaired Pointers

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Understanding Genetic Disease in German Shorthaired Pointers

Both humans and dogs can be genetically predisposed to developing similar diseases. One of these diseases that may even sound familiar to you is lymphedema. We’ve all heard that we have lymph glands that are important for our body to function as a healthy unit. The German Shorthaired Pointer also has lymph glands. Lymph is a clear fluid that is taken from the tissues of the body and the spaces between the tissues. Typically, lymph is filled with proteins and returns to the blood through the lymph glands. However, it sometimes happens that there is excess fluid between the body’s tissues resulting in swelling (edema), the result being called “lymphedema”. The question that arises is “what causes lymphedema?”

Fluids apparently accumulate because there is some kind of abnormal interference with the routine flow of lymph. When lymphedema occurs, it can be primary (hereditary) or secondary lymphedema. If a German Shorthair has primary lymphedema it is inherited and, in this type, the lymphatic vessels are abnormal or may be absent. When a breed develops the secondary type of this disease, the lymphatic vessels are likely to be blocked by a number of things, including tumors and inflammation. Because the German Shorthair has a genetic predisposition to primary lymphedema, swelling may be noted at birth or shortly after birth.

It should be mentioned that, in both primary and secondary lymphedema, swelling can be observed in the area of ​​the hind legs, ears, central part and even the front legs. Anytime the skin is stretched with swelling, the chance of developing a bacterial infection increases and there may be a longer healing time for any injury. The dog will not look bad, otherwise it may be healthy, but it may feel spongy to the touch.

When and if your German Shorthaired Pointer appears to have swelling, it is wise to take the dog to the vet for evaluation. It can be helpful to know that swelling from lymphedema can start in a dog’s paws and spread to the body. You may notice that your dog is in pain and may have difficulty moving. Lymphedema is a serious condition that can lead to infections under the skin. Lymph vessels can also become infected. The veterinarian will perform a thorough examination, blood count, skin biopsy. There is also a test called lymphangiography in which dye is injected and x-rays are taken. Treatment of lymphedema varies from nothing, medication to surgery, depending on the severity of the disease.

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