Southern Flatcoated Retriever Club         



Health Updates

Tumour Survey


The tumour survey is winding down, Jane Dobson will now liaise directly with the Flatcoated Retriever Society Health Sub Committee regarding her future work. Jane is keen to stress that despite the winding down of the survey she and her team will maintain a strong interest in the health of the Flatcoated Retriever via their Cause of Death register. They are especially interested in Histiocytic Sarcomas and would still like to hear of affected dogs, and will offer advice on diagnosis and management to vets treating these cases if required. We would still appreciate owners taking the time to report incidences of cancer directly to the Society via the “Health Form” available on the “more health matters” page of the website. Or click the link to the right.

Glaucoma Research


Dr Cathryn Mellersh Animal Health Trust (AHT) requires DNA from Flatcoats that have had their eyes removed due to primary glaucoma for their research, details here:-

Cause of Death Register:


A cause of death register for the Flatcoated Retriever has been set up by Dr Jane Dobson, Cambridge School of Veterinary Medicine. Data should be entered as dogs die from now, rather than historically, as the results will be more robust this way. Please note that this Register is for ALL causes of death not just cancer, and the only person able to see the data entered is Dr Jane Dobson. 

Register Glaucoma Research

Please follow the link to the right to view an urgent Blood Donor Appeal ....


blooddonor.2 Health Form

Banking of Flatcoat DNA with the AHT:


The Flatcoated Retriever Society Health Sub Committee are encouraging owners who have Flatcoats with certain conditions to submit their DNA to the Animal Health Trust (AHT) to be banked for future research. For full information please follow the link to the right.

DNA Banking

A statement from Dr Jane Dobson:


This is a link to a statement issued by Dr Jane Dobson with regards to the "Cause of death register". Please read the document, as it offers some interesting information, and future reference for our breed and what we can do for it.


Kennel Club Population Analysis for the Flatcoated Retriever


The report comprises of an analysis of pedigree information held by the Kennel Club over the period 1980-2014 for each breed to determine the rate of loss of genetic diversity within each breed. The reports aim to be a useful resource in the management of the genetic diversity of breeds in order to maintain a good balance between inbreeding and genetic selection.

Breed Report

Give a dog a Genome Project


The Animal Health Trust (AHT) / Kennel Club (KC) Give a Dog a Genome Project


The AHT and the KC genetics centre have recently launched a research project called ‘Give a Dog a Genome’ (GDG) the aim is to sequence the entire genome (2.4 billion letters of DNA) of 50 dog breeds. The resulting information will increase the ability to identify mutations which cause inherited diseases.


It costs approximately £2000 to sequence a genome however the 50 breed clubs who agree to join the project will be asked to contribute £1000 as the GDG work will be part funded by the KC Charitable trust. The Flatcoated Retriever Society’s General Committee has agreed to support the participation of our breed in this initiative by making a donation to the research project.


Further information about the project can be found by following the link to the right. Alternatively contact Liz Branscombe (KC Breed Health Co-ordinator for the Flatcoated Retriever) at

Genome Project

Society AGM - Health Report


Liz Branscombe has provided us with the 2016 Flatcoated Retriever Society AGM health report. This can be found by clicking on the link to the right.

Health Report

Research at Cambridge University


There is research being carried out into the relationship between the immune system and the biological behaviour of Histiocytic Sarcome. Cambridge University are calling for cases. Please follow the link, or download the leaflet.

Research Info Leaflet October 2017 Update

Alabama Rot

(Cutaneous and Renal Glomerular Vasculopathy)


A disease that presents as open a non healing sore(s)  which then affects the kidneys; in most cases being fatal.  If you find a non responding wound on your dog's extremities have it examined by a vet without delay, particularly if you are in an area where there has been known incidence or it is wet and muddy (see below).


This year has seen 43 cases across 21 separate counties, lately cases have been seen in West Sussex, Hampshire and Devon.  It is primarily seen in the wetter, colder months (Oct-May) reducing in incidence as the weather and ground dries.


As yet there has been no definite cause found despite research; it is difficult to know whether the prevalence is actual or that awareness is now higher.  It is important to remember that this is still a relatively rare disease, precautions can be taken for example washing mud off feet etc on return but there is no need to stop enjoying your dogs or taking them out.


Confirmed cases

2014 - 32

2015 - 21

2016 - 19

2017 - 40

Breed Health Report 2018

Health Report