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von Willebrand Disease (vWD)

vWD is the most common type of bleeding disorder found in dogs, with Dobermans being one of the most commonly affected, though it has been identified in 54 breeds since 1970.  According to one scientific paper reporting the prevalence of vWD in the Doberman, Type 1 is found in 50% of Dobermans in the United Kingdom and 73% in the United States.* 

While there are three types of vWD only type 1 - the least serious - accounts for 95% of all canine cases and is characterized by a partial deficiency in vWF, which causes a mild-to-moderate bleeding risk.  It is rarely life threatening. 

Genetically, a Doberman can have one of three status of vWD.  If they inherit NO mutated genes, they will "CLEAR" and at no risk of having or passing on the disease. 
If they inherit ONE mutated gene they are called a "CARRIER" and at no risk of having the disease and have a 50% chance of passing on ONE mutated gene when bred.  Bred to a CLEAR dog they will produce both "CLEAR" and "CARRIER" pups, but no AFFECTED pups.
When a dog has TWO mutated genes they are called "AFFECTED" and can possibly show signs of the disease.  Again, the amount of bleeding is not often significant, however if dogs can be produced without risk of the disease, all the better. 

If an AFFECTED dog is bred to a CLEAR dog 50% of the litter will be CLEAR and 50% will be CARRIERS.  If an AFFECTED dog is bred to a CARRIER 50% of the litter will be carriers and 50% will be AFFECTED.  If an AFFECTED is bred to an AFFECTED dog, 100% of the litter will be AFFECTED. 

* J Vet Diagn Invest. 2018 Mar; 30(2): 310–314.
DanBar Ranch Policy on Breeding "Carriers" (vWD)
Doberman Health And It's Breeders And Breed Clubs:

Purebred dogs get a bad name for being "unhealthy" compared to mixed breeds, and in some cases this is true. It has nothing to do with inbreeding - inbreeding itself cannot cause disease - but has everything to do with how well pure breeds of dog have been stewarded by those who breed them. 

Pure breeds SHOULD be the healthiest dogs around... science has given breeders hundreds of breed specific tests which alert us to diseases our breeding dogs may carrier, making it a simple thing to remove those dog's problem genes from a given breed's gene pool.

So why aren't purebreds healthy? Why is the Doberman, one of the most popular breeds, a paragon of health?  Why, indeed, is the Doberman one of the UNHEALTHIEST breeds on the planet?

The Doberman today is the Poster Child for everything wrong with modern dog breeding practices, human greed, puppy buyer indifference and lack of education and breed clubs (and the AKC) failure to serve the breed. 

The beautiful Doberman quickly became a dog show favorite and this is a major contributing factor to its poor health. Simply put, the majority of "show breeders" select first and foremost for the purely physical appearance that will win championships. In both Europe and America (and the rest of the world where dogs are shown) top winning stud dogs with KNOWN genetic health issues are still being used.  Excuses are made by the breeders, the breed clubs - everyone who puts show wins ahead of ruthless selection against disease. 

Reputable breeders will openly discuss the health issues of the breed and MORE IMPORTANTLY they will show you proof of health testing done on their breeding dogs.