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National Entlebucher Mountain Dog Association

Eye Health in the Entlebucher

A variety of eye diseases and conditions can occur in Entlebucher Mountain Dogs as in most breeds of dogs. The NEMDA BCOE requires an annual eye exam certified by a Board Certified Veterinary Ophthalmologist for all breeding dogs. The results of these exams must be submitted to a public database maintained by Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA). The club also strongly recommends that every Entlebucher receives annual eye exams conducted by a veterinary ophthalmologist along with their routine annual health exams. Here is the advanced search link for OFA Entlebucher Eye Test Results.

The most serious eye conditions that affect the Entlebucher are listed below:


What causes cataracts?
The most common cause of cataracts in the dog is inherited disease. Other causes include injuries to the eye or diseases such as diabetes mellitus (“sugar diabetes”). Some cataracts appear to occur spontaneously and are age related.

Please visit the following webpages for more information about cataracts:

If you have any concerns, please contact your veterinarian.


What causes glaucoma?
Glaucoma is caused by inadequate drainage of aqueous fluid; it is not caused by overproduction of fluid. Glaucoma is further classified as primary or secondary glaucoma.

Primary glaucoma results in increased intra-ocular pressure in a healthy eye. It occurs due to inherited anatomical abnormalities in the drainage angle.

Secondary glaucoma results in increased intra-ocular pressure due to disease or injury to the eye.

Please visit the following webpages for more information about glaucoma:

If you have any concerns, please contact your veterinarian.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy – PRA

The Entlebucher carries the gene for Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA). PRA is a hereditary disease of the eye that causes blindness. Entlebuchers were mostly affected by the late onset variety (PRA-prcd) with very few affected by early onset PRA. In 2004, through fundraising, education, and co-operation amongst our breeders, NEMDA worked with Cornell University and Optigen to make a DNA test available for PRA in the Entlebucher.

NEMDA BCOE Breeders are required to test their breeding Entlebuchers to find out whether they are Pattern Normal, Carrier or Affected. NEMDA Breeders use this information to prevent producing puppies affected by this disease. Not since 2004, has any Entlebucher produced by NEMDA’s BCOE breeders suffered from PRA.

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