The breeding program
Denmark has been at the forefront when it comes to research into disc prolapse, and therefore the Danish Dachshund breeders have had the opportunity to X-ray their dogs’ spines for almost 20 years. During this period of time, the screening programme has alternated between being voluntary and mandatory. This has not been optimal, and from April 1 2019 X-raying of both males and females will be mandatory (Box 4). Additionally, screening programmes have now been implemented in Norway, Sweden, Finland, Australia and UK as well. The Swedish images are scored in Norway and the UK images are scored in Finland. Based on the the number of calcified discs, the dogs are given a back status which can be Free (0 calcifications), Mild (1-2 calcifications), Moderate (3-4 calcifications) or Severe degree (5 or more calcifications) (Figure 2).