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Neuromuscular disorder workup/research

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  1.) Bringing you up to date on how the affected dogs are doing, and what more we know.... and, don't know....
  2.) Tyee's death announcement - Sept 23, 2008 - May 15, 2014 - a sad day here at the Tumnatki and the SierraWinds kennels - what it means for our research efforts.

2013 -
Four and a half years ago (2008), Sheryl O'Rourke of SierraWind Siberians bred a litter from two of my Tumnatki dogs; two of the six pups developed a neuromuscular disorder that slowly takes away their coordination and muscle strength. At that time, the vets couldn't identify what was going on. One of those dogs is now almost completely disabled, though pain free and happy. The other stabilized and is able to work in harness to a limited extent.

We now have a second litterborn in July 2002, out of two Tumnatki dogs here with a very similar pedigree in which two of seven youngsters are affected. In both litters, those affected are males, however some of the male litter mates are normal. Again, none of the many vets that have either examined the pups or who have watched the videos of them, knows what this is. General agreement is that it is a progressive, degenerative neurological problem.

Sheryl & I have done initial workup, x-rays, exams and lab tests and have some answers to what is NOT going on. It is not - an orthopedic problem, neosporosis, toxoplasmosis, myasthenia gravis, or Alaskan Husky Encephalopathy (AHE). We have also ruled out some of the known neuromuscular disorders by comparing symptom profiles.

We have been in contact with Dr. Karen Vernau at the University of California at Davis and are scheduling to have complete workups done on some of the affected dogs. We will be presenting with dogs at U.C. Davis on Monday, May 6th - Wednesday, May 8th, 2013.

Doing these evaluations is going to cost more than we can afford by ourselves, but we both feel that finding out what this disease is and how it is transmitted is important, not just to our kennels, but to the Siberian Husky breed.

If we raise more than is needed for any reason, we will use the remaining funds to offer testing to others whose dogs may have this affliction.

We would welcome whatever amount you feel you could contribute to this effort. Information on the findings will be made available as we know more.


Karen Yeargain
Tumnatki Siberians
AKC Racing Siberians
Prineville, OR

Sheryl O'Rourke
SierraWind Siberians
AKC Racing Siberians
Prineville, OR


  • Jill Wilson
    • $50 
    • 10 yrs
  • Kim & Randy Smith
    • $200 (Offline)
    • 10 yrs


Karen Yeargain
Prineville, Oregon, OR

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