Doberman Congenital Deafness Study

$8,020 of $30,000 goal

Raised by 93 people in 47 months
***This fund does not support just one person, or one pet. This fundraiser supports thousands of individuals, breeders, families and friends in the doberman community, as well as could pioneer this dna test for other breeds  and for possibly our children. ***

In 2010,  A group of breeders sought out Dr. Aubrey Webb with concerns about vestibular disease in the doberman breed. These breeders were seeking attention to finding the gene that was responsible for causing vestibular deafness in dobermans and creating a dna test  to make it available to the doberman community. The vestibular disorder was thought to be an inherited condition.  Dr. Aubrey  Webb asked Mark Neff, Ph.D., head of the Laboratory of Canine Genetics & Genomics would soon collaberate to identify the mode of inheritance of the disorder in dobermans. Together Webb and Neff coordinated with   research labs in search for the gene responsible for this disease. In 2012 a collection of  dna provided by doberman breeders proved to find one specific causative marker that determined dogs clear (no mutation), affected (2 copies of the mutation)  and carrier dogs (one copy of the mutation) within the doberman population. However by  September 30th, 2014,  research had been halted due to lack of funding.
   Vestibular disease has been around in dobermans since the creation of the breed. For decades breeders who produce these animals in their litters would  euthanize symptomatic puppies. These puppies often are born deaf in one ear, or both, and will continually circle, roll, thrash around, stagger, cry, and nurse on their backs. Mothers become unsettled, and worried because they can not console the crying puppy, which often times creates complications with stomping and laying on normally reared babies.   Many of these puppies end up fading for they are unable to latch on and nurse properly, and vigerous mothers attempting to over stimulate them. Therefore, these  Puppies  require continued support from the breeder in order to survive. Puppies that are raised by the breeder eventually learn how to compensate for the lack of coordination and can eventually walk normally without staggering , and falling to the floor rolling, but often times will have a slight tilt to  on the affected side of the head. These puppies require the right homes, that accept that their new puppy is unique and will need special training with sign language, body language and viberation. .  With the right home, these dogs will flourish and make great companions. However, many of these puppies struggle with engagement not only with humans, but also with other animals that they go to live with. This in itself makes finding homes for these special puppies extremely difficult. Therefore, many of these puppies are turned into rescues, or live in unsafe environments. Many juggle from home to home as they age, and quite often do not make it into their senior years unless there is breeder intervention.
  Today, most breeders feel this disease is particular to certian bloodlines within the breed. However at this point the disorder has not been proven to be bloodline base, gender base,  color base, or if the disorder is directly involved with any other known disorder. Nor has it been determined how much of the doberman population is clear, carrier or affected. It however has been determined that  carrier dogs are  with one copy of the gene are NOT symptomatic. Further research is required to assist breeders in the irradication of this disease with in the doberman breed.
    Please assist the doberman breed on the quest for further research and preservation of this very important genetic test.  Donations from 1200 individuals, at $20 each, will move this research forward with Projectdog Labs in Davis California to finalization , save countless lives, and increase genetic diversity in our gene pool.

You can find additional reading about vestibular disease in the following links;
Purina Pro Club

Direct Donations can be mailed with check to:
Holly Peterson
210 Iwo Jima St.
Lufkin, Texas 75901

Paypal @


If you desire a tax deduction;

Project Dog  DvDob Research
1260 Lake Blvd, STE 238
Davis, Ca  95616 USA

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Often times there are doberman puppies with vestibular disease that are born and appear to be just like every other puppy in the litter. These puppies move like other puppies, they dont cry alot, they dont turn in circles or fumble around. Some of these puppies are good at latching on to their mothers, and are able to gain weight and stay up with the rest of the litter in size when they have support. They do however have some slight differences, that make them stand out from the other puppies. View the loaded video, which puppy do you believe tested DNA affected by Projectdog as having vestibular disease ? If you guessed the white string boy, and the puppy on the bottom squirming wildly, you are correct. The boy had mild vestibular disease symptoms, he tumbled some, had a head tit which made him midly role, and he nursed on his back with breeder support. Which this all allowed him to remain a robust little boy. Once breeder support was withdrawn due to work schedule, this puppy faded quickly. He later was DNA tested with Projectdog along with his extremely symptomatic sister which came back as vestibular disease affected. Both puppies was euthanized on the advice of a vet due to fading puppy syndrome. Many puppies from untested parents go without notice, and parish from fading puppy syndrome, when vestibular disease could have been the underlying cause. The only true way of knowing if you have a ding puppy, is by testing. The only way to test, is to support Projectdogs research for this disease.
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I've been asked to find videos of Ding puppies as they age, unfortunately this is a bit harder task as most will not make it to an older age due to being euthanized. However there is one little lady that was posted in 2010 on Youtube, that will give you a good idea of what these puppies will be like around 10-14wks of age. Some dogs eventually will walk normal, as they learn to compensate for the balance changes, but with their head tilted to one side. Some dogs however, are not as lucky. Click on the link to the campaign to view the graphic video showing this special little ladies struggles.
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We are up and running again! Show your support by displaying this amazing graphic on websites and facebook pages. Together we can make this happen !
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Doberman puppies around the world are being born daily with vestibular type symptoms. Some we are aware about but are unable to conclude because research testing has been haulted due to funding. But for many puppies born with vestibular disease, they go un- noticed, for lack of knowledge, and lack of the information highway, for both the breeder and the vet. Many puppies parish as a result from lack of nursing support, and being enthanized. Because of this many will not ever have a pet name, they will not feel the warmth of their loving owners. They will never see the outside of the litter box, they will never hear the birds sing. Do you part, in giving these guys a chance, and arm breeders with the oppertunity to know which dogs carry the gene to produce this disease. Feel free to donate in a lossed dogs name- or in a lossed love ones name, who has charrished the breed. Feel free to donate a little, or donate alot. But please dont walk away from something that you- yourself can do.... to make a difference !
5 day old vestibular puppy, & normal pup
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$8,020 of $30,000 goal

Raised by 93 people in 47 months
Created October 8, 2015
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