Progressive Retinal Atrophy, crd4/cord1
PRA-CRD4/cord1 is a retinal disease that causes progressive, non-painful vision loss over a 1-2 year period. The retina contains cells, called photoreceptors, that collect information about light and send signals to the brain. There are two types of photoreceptors: rods, for night vision and movement, and cones, for day vision and color. This type of PRA leads to early loss of cone cells, causing day blindness before night blindness.
Signs and symptoms
PRA is a subtle disease and dogs adapt very well to the slow loss of vision. You may notice that your dog is reluctant to go down the stairs, bumps into door frames or corners, or takes a longer time to fetch a toy.
The earliest ophthalmic signs are typically present by 6 months of age. There is a wide range in the age of when dogs become clinically affected, although the average age is approximately 5 years. Dogs as young as 6 months may be blind, while dogs as old as 10 may still have vision.
Veterinarians use a focused light to examine the pupils. In affected dogs, the pupils will appear more dilated and slower to contract. Your vet may also use a lens to visualize the retina at the back of the eye to look for changes in the optic nerve or blood vessels. You may be referred to a veterinary ophthalmologist for a definitive diagnosis.
Currently, there is no definitive treatment for PRA. Supplements, including antioxidants, have been proposed for management of the disease, but have not been scientifically proven effective.
What to do if your dog is at risk
- Careful monitoring by your veterinarian will be required for the rest of your affected dog's life as secondary complications, including cataracts, can develop.
- With blind dogs, keeping furniture in the same location, making sure they are on a leash in unfamiliar territory, and training them to understand verbal commands are some of the ways to help them at home.
This mutation was first described in the Miniature Longhaired Dachshund.
This mutation is inherited in an autosomal recessive manner, meaning that dogs must have two copies of the mutation to be affected. However, there are other genetic and/or environmental factors that affect the development of this disease as there is a wide range of onset of clinical signs.
RPGRIP1 (Exon 2) ‐ chr15
This health condition affects the following breeds
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