BVA Hip & Elbow Scoring

British Veterinary Association (BVA)/ Kennel Club (KC) Hip Dysplasia Scheme

Hip dysplasia is a genetically transmitted condition which can affect the hips of many pedigree breeds of dogs causing them to have mal formed hips which can lead to arthritis later in life.

The BVA and KC have organised a scheme whereby radiographs (x-rays) of dogs are assessed (scored) for anatomical and pathological changes to the hips. The score for a pair of hips may range from 0 (very good) to 106 (very bad). This score in association with the Breed Mean Score (the average hip score for that particular breed) is intended to help breeders in choosing their breeding stock.

The hip score of parents can also be an aid in the purchase of a puppy, as puppies which are bred from parents with low hip scores are more likely to have good hips. It must however be remembered that there are factors affecting hip scores other than the genetics of the parents and the parents’ hip score should only be used as a guide and does not necessarily mean that a puppy will have good hips if their scores are good.

BVA/KC Elbow Dysplasia Scheme

Elbow dysplasia is a common multi factorial condition resulting in a variety of developmental disorders of the canine elbow leading to lameness and arthritis of the elbow joint. There is a strong genetic component to this condition so radiographic grading of the changes can help breeders to choose the most suitable dogs to use as parents.

Again as with hip dysplasia the examination is conducted by evaluation of radiographs of the elbow joint for any anatomical or pathological changes associated with this condition. The appearance of the elbow joint is graded from 0 (good) to 3 (bad). It must be remembered that lameness is often a poor indicator of elbow dysplasia as many dogs can have radiographic changes associated with this condition but are clinically sound.

Procedure to get you dog Hip and or Elbow Scored

Should you require your dog’s hips and or elbows to be scored please contact our Beccles Surgery for advice and relevant charges.
Your dog must be a minimum of 1 year of age, you will need to present us with the following documents, the KC Registration Certificate if it is registered with the KC and any related transfer or change of name certificate. At admission you will be asked to complete and sign the first section of the certificate (Owners Declaration) to verify that the details given in that section relate to the dog being submitted.

Once we have an x-ray of your dogs hips/elbows we will submit it along with the certificate that you filled in to the BVA for a panel of experts to Score. As the panel only meet once a fortnight it can take up to 3 weeks for us to receive the results for your dog, so please don’t panic if you are waiting for them, we are too.