Acral Mutilation Syndrome (AMS)

Breeders and Puppy Buyers - This spring brought forward a neurodegenerative sensory disorder called Acral Mutilation Syndrome (AMS).  A protein in the brain called GDNF becomes deficient and causes sensory insensitivity. In simple terms, the dog does not feel pain or temperature.  There were cases of infected dogs chewing on themselves and do to the extent of the damage had to be euthanized.   This disorder has been found in English Cockers, English Springer Spaniels, English Pointers, German Shorthair Pointers, French Spaniels and Miniature Schnauzers.

What we know so far:

  • No effective treatment
  • Genetics - AMS is inherited.  Both parents must carry one copy of the mutation for the disease to occur.
  • DNA Testing is the only way to identify carriers.
  • OFA  now accepts Acral Mutilation Syndrome results.  You will need to complete an OFA DNA Application and attach a copy of the lab report and mail to OFA with the $15 fee.  OFA will mail you  a certificate.  The application can be found  on the OFA website at
  • Embark Vet
    **Kit costs $179.00 and includes both AMS and PRA tests. Discounts available for purchases of multiple kits.  Save $25: ESSFT25

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