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Screening for Syringomyelia/ Chiari Malformation in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels

Downs referrals has extended a scheme currently being run by Dr Clare Rusbridge (RCVS and European Specialist in Veterinary Neurology, see link at Stone Lion Veterinary Referrals in London, to screen breeding stock for this all too prevalent disease.

Should you have clients registered with your practice who breed CKCS (or simply owners of the breed who have concerns about the condition) it may be worth discussing the benefits of participating in this program, given the increasing awareness of breeders regarding the scheme.                      

How it Works               

MRI of dog affected by Chiari malformation and Syringomyelia

We offer a reduced scanning fee – £250+VAT, with a further discount applicable for clients with multiple dogs.  This includes the cost of anaesthesia, and will produce a limited MRI-study which will be submitted for grading and certification by Dr Rusbridge.  Clients need to be made aware that a veterinary consultation will not be included as part of this fee in order to keep costs down.  Dogs will be admitted by a veterinary nurse, but all pre-anaesthesia examinations and scans will be supervised by a veterinary surgeon.  Again, there will be no consultation upon discharge to discuss the findings prior to receiving the certification from Dr Rusbridge.  

Participating dogs must be

  • over 12 months of age,
  • permanently identified; e.g. by way of a microchip or legible tattoo.
  • free of any signs of the disease or other known anaesthetic risk – they will be required to fill in a consent form pertaining to this. 

To receive a certificate (takes 1-2 weeks), owners will also need to provide proof of ownership, and the dog’s pedigree name with registration details.

Please contact us with any additional queries you may have regarding this service.