The Canine Health Information Center (CHIC)
The Canine Health Information Center (CHIC) is a centralized voluntary informed consent canine health record database. Its primary purpose is to provide owners, and breeders and prospective puppy buyers with health information that will assist in managing a dog’s health and for breeding/buying healthy dogs. This database stores records of canine health testing information on individual animals from multiple testing sources. The information is provided to CHIC and validated before inclusion in a dog’s record and made publicly available in an online database.
CHIC’s philosophy is rooted in the realization that each breed has different health concerns. Working through the national breed club,They are able to tailor the CHIC requirements are established for to the needs of each breed. These unique requirements are established through input from parent clubs. These specific requirements typically consist of the inherited diseases that impact health and well-being of a dog are of the greatest concern and for which a screening test is available.
The CHIC program has four main goals:
1) To work through parent clubs to define ongoing and emerging health issues for inclusion in the breed’s centralized database.
2) To establish and maintain a publicly accessible central health record information system that will support canine disease research.
3) To provide health information to owners and, breeders and prospective puppy buyers.
4) To facilitate canine disease research that can help maintain the health of the breed.
The CHIC program provides accurate and validated information about the results of a breeder’s health testing. A CHIC number is issued when a breeder has; satisfied each breed specific health test AND the breeder has opted to make the results of those tests public.
For our breed, the Lagotto Romagnolo Club of America has determined the following tests must be performed in order for a dog to receive a CHIC number:
1) Hip Dysplasia (OFA evaluation or PennHip evaluation).
2) Eye examination by a boarded ACVO Ophthalmologist each year, results registered with the OFA.
3) Patellar Luxation (OFA evaluation).
4) Benign Familial Juvenile Epilepsy (DNA based test results from an approved lab registered with the OFA).
5) Lagotto Storage Disease (DNA based test results from an approved lab registered with the OFA).
6) DNA Repository (Optional) (Participation in the OFA/CHICDNA Repository.
How to get a CHIC number:
1) The dog must be screened for all five (5) health items listed above. This list may change as more information on newly recognized health conditions associated with the breed emerge and are approved by the breed club.
2) The dog does NOT need to have normal results on ANY of the screening tests.
3) The dog must have some form of permanent ID (tattoo or microchip).
4) The owner must agree to let OFA post the test results “in the public domain” (on their website).
5) Once testing is complete and all each tests is appropriately submitted to OFA, a CHIC number will be automatically generated.
6) Currently OFA charges a fee to register each test result with OFA, there is no additional fee to receive a CHIC number.
The CHIC program helps breeders evaluate dogs to use in their breeding programs, it helps buyers pick breeders who do health testing and verifies that a pup’s parents have been screened. It also helps researchers estimate the prevalence of health issues over generations of dogs and across all breeds, and it helps all of us monitor disease prevalence and measure our progress towards breeding healthier dogs!
Questions regarding the CHIC program may be addressed to:
Orthopedic Foundation for Animals, Inc.
2300 East Nifong Blvd.
Columbia, MO 65201-3806