We are looking for Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers over the age of 13 years (lowered from 14) and in relatively good health so that we may bank their DNA for future genetic studies. Your dog is valuable to Wheaten research, and your willingness to participate in this project is greatly appreciated. Of course, the older the dog, the better.

The DNA bank will be a critical tool for future research. Should a gene marker for protein-losing disease be found, the ability to test it against DNA from Wheatens determined to be unaffected throughout their lives will be an important step to confirm the marker.

If you would like to participate in this project, read the letter below from Dr. Littman.

For those who have already sent their dogs' samples to Dr. Littman, and you would like to be recognized along with your dog for this major contribution, please send the following to Leo Springer at for inclusion on the honor roll in Benchmarks.

Since the results of the necropsy are confidential between the owner and Dr. Littman, they will not be published. The purpose of compiling this list is to recognize the participants, thank their owners and by so doing encourage others to participate when the time comes for their oldster to depart.

  • Owner's name
  • Dog's name and call name
  • Sire and dam
  • Sex
  • Date of birth
  • Date of death

Sale of Wheaten health articles helps to fund this project. Anyone who would like to make a monetary contribution for the project, make your check payable to Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania and send it to Dr. Littman at the address at the end of her letter. You can make the donation in honor of or memory of a dog or person. Be sure to designate that the contribution is to go for the Geriatric Dog Project. Your gift will be recognized in Bellwether, Penn's quarterly publication.

If you have a philosophical reason that wouldn't allow for internal organs (kidneys, intestines) to be harvested after death for histopathology and you have current normal blood and urine test results, you should call either Dr. Littman or Anna Marzolino to discuss your dog's qualifications. It is possible that DNA could be harvested either from blood or, if after death, an external source of DNA such as a toe or an ear flap (or skin about 2"x2"). This would be a less than perfect case but still helpful for the DNA bank. Each of these cases would have to be looked at on an individual basis.


Revised 9/2007

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