Ichthyosis in the Golden Retriever.

Dogs with Ichthyosis may develop white scales on the skin soon after birth. The scales persist through the animal's life and may progressively blacken, becoming dry and rough with age but typically do not cause itching. This condition has been around for years, but has recently become more familiar due to a new genetic test developed by Antagene (based in France) now available for Golden Retrievers.

Golden Retriever Ichthyosis is inherited as an autosomal recessive trait. A dog must have two defective copies (one from each parent) of the mutated gene to be affected by the disease.) Ichthyosis occurs in many breeds of dogs, including American Bull Terriers, Jack Russell Terriers, West Highland White Terriers, Cairn Terriers, Boxers and Golden Retrievers. It is also a common condition in humans.

This condition is believed to be quite wide spread throughout some European line’s, and in America and yet many breeders take little notice of it.

Statistically in Europe the latest data (over 500 dogs tested) shows 30% clear dogs, 40% of carrier and 30% affected. (data from ANTAGENE). That is a hug 70%.

No specific or efficient treatments for Ichthyosis are currently available. Treatments mainly rely on increased hygiene measures (e.g. frequent brushing, kerato-regulating shampoo, weekly emollients, moisturising spray such as Humilac) and providing a fatty acid-enriched diet. ]


In Golden Retrievers, ICH is usually very mild.  Most breeders do not test for ICH as they do not feel that it is necessary. At SnowWater we do test for ICH. Also when speaking with most Veterinarians, they have not even heard of it.  Eliminating a condition that is typically mild and cosmetic and can easily be controlled would cancel out a huge gene pool. At Snowwater we continue to work towards producing puppies that are clear and we will be so proud to fully get there.. 


AKC English Cream Golden Retriever's

Business Hours:

11:30 AM to 5:30 PM Monday-Friday

Visits are available by appointment

Brittany & Brenda Davidson

4707 Scott Rd. 

Jamestown,  PA 16134

For more information email us at: bdtreasures@gmail.com

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