All breeders have a responsibility to screen their hounds for IVDD before breeding. But Dachshunds not being bred from should also be screened. Screening can be done when the dog is between 2 and 4 years old.
To screen your dog in the UK, you can find a participating centre and register with the Kennel Club scheme here:
The cost of IVDD Screening is currently £320 and the programme has subsidies available from both the Kennel Club of £100 and the Dachshund Health UK of £100, so that the majority of the cost is covered.
Experienced Dachshund breeder, Dieter Honsalek, shares his thoughts about back screening and photos of his hound Arco in the x-ray process:
Whatever can be done for the hereditary health of our beloved Dachshunds, I will do it!
Breeding wirehaired miniature dachshunds for more than 40 years it has been always one of my most important goals to do all against the spinal problem that chondrodystrophic breeds like dachshunds have. The most efficient and economical method is to x-ray the spine of each breeding dog to minimize the calcifications that are responsible for the paralysis on the first hand for the dog, but on the other hand for the owner, too.
For many years I let my dogs be x-rayed by a vet who took one picture of the whole spine the tail inclusive. Therefore, I had to hold my dachshund as calm as possible on the table. But these pictures were not meaningful enough because of the unstable position of the dog and of the not so good quality of the equipment. When I read the interview with the Finnish Professor Anu Lappalainen about IVDD I was convinced of the need to x-ray the different parts of the spine with a top digital x-ray machine. And to get the best pictures the dachshund has to be sedated. So that it is completely relaxed, and the vet can put the spine in an optimal position. And I promise you, that sedation is no problem for your dachshund.
The first dog having been x-rayed in this way was my now 4 years old stud Arco two years ago and I was very relieved and happy when I got the result IDC-1. And the next one will be Ilse my young bitch when she will be 2 years old.
My appeal to each breeder of dachshunds is:
Let your dog be x-rayed before you start breeding and do breed with it only if it has not more than 3 calcifications.
Let me tell you from my experiences with two of our dachshunds, in 41 years of breeding, suffering in having a disc prolapse, you don’t want to experience how painful it is for your darling.
I am convinced that we have to go this way otherwise we take the risk that breeding dachshunds will be forbidden because it will appear on the list of torture breeding!!!
Here's Arco happily hunting: