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Pioneers open the way for others to follow


The first Australian Veterinarian, Dr. Rosemary McKean has been fully licensed to submit German Shepherd Dog radiographs to the German hip and elbow dysplasia Screening Scheme governed by the German Giessen Dysplasia Centre (DZG) who is commissioned by the World Union for German Shepherds (WUSV) to build a centralised database to inform how the worldwide GSD fraternity can improve the breeding of German Shepherds. The DZG is a German research and assessment organisation that has specialists in assessment hip and elbow radiographs (more information on DZG is available here)

Dr Rosemary McKean works in the Moorong Veterinary Clinic, located in Wagga Wagga, NSW, and she recently completed the training and examination required to become an accredited foreign Radiologist for the DZG.

I have a huge soft spot for the German Shepherd Dog. We have a few German Shepherd Dog breeders in Wagga Wagga who need hip and elbow radiographs for assessment of genetically inherited hip and elbow dysplasia.

Dr. McKean's interest in becoming an accredited Radiologist with the DZG arose after a client, Pantathean GSDs, pointed out the opportunity.

As part of a progressive veterinary practice we are always keen to be involved in any scheme that looks to improve a breed and especially the health of a breed. The radiograph set for assessment in Germany has additional hip and elbow views required and a different grading system

The best part of the accreditation process according to Dr McKean was the educational component, especially the hip dysplasia module developed by the HD/ED Expert Panel at DZG.

Vets routinely take radiographs for hip and elbow evaluation, however, we have little more than a basic idea of the criteria for assessment. The hip module gives a very clear, insightful overview of all of the nuances that are assessed and why they are important in the animal.

The Foreign Veterinary Radiologist course and accreditation is led by Dr Bernd Tellhelm who is specialised in skeletal dysplasia in German Shepherd dogs.

Dr Tellhelm was very helpful and supportive throughout the accreditation process and as a working veterinary practitioner himself, he and his team have developed a course that is relatively straightforward to fit into a busy practice life.

Dr. Mckean says she found the course clinically relevant and useful to further understand the skeleton disorders, such as hip and elbow dysplasia, which unfortunately is not uncommon in the German Shepherds.

Being part of the international research forum will provide invaluable information that we can share with our clients going forward enabling us to give a more educated insight into the fundamental structure of their animal”.

The WGSDCA is grateful for the support of Dr. McKean and the Moorong Veterinary Clinic. For further information, lease contact Rosemary McKean directly (02 6921 3462)


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