Dedicated to the elimination of heritable eye disease in purebred dogs through registration and research.
WHAT IS CERF?
The Canine Eye Registration Foundation (CERF) is an organization that was founded by a group of concerned, purebred owner/breeders who recognized that the quality of their dog's lives were being affected by heritable eye disease. CERF was then established in conjunction with cooperating, board certified, veterinary ophthalmologists, as a means to accomplish the goal of elimination of heritable eye disease in all purebred dogs by forming a centralized, national registry.
The CERF Registry not only registers those dog's certified free of heritable eye disease by members of the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists (A.C.V.O. ), but also collects data on all dogs examined by A.C.V.O. Diplomates. This data is used to form the CERF data base which is useful in researching trends in eye disease and breed susceptibility. Not only is this data useful to clinicians and students of ophthalmology, but to interested breed clubs and individual breeders and owners of specific breeds.
HOW DOES CERF WORK?
After the painless examination of the dogs eyes, the A.C.V.O. Diplomate will complete the CERF form and indicate any specific disease(s) found. Breeding advice will be offered based on guidelines established for that particular breed by the genetics Committee of the A.C.V.O. Bear in mind that CERF and the A.C.V.O. are separate, but cooperating entities. The A.C.V.O only provides their professional services and expertise to ensure that uniform standards are upheld for the certification of dog's eyes with the CERF organization.
If the dog is certified to be free of heritable eye disease, you can then send in the completed owner's copy of the CERF form with the appropriate fee ($12.00 for the original CERF Registration, or $8.00 if it is a re-certification or kennel rate). Hybrid Registration is $15.00 per dog. Re-CERF or kennel rate (10 or more new) is $12.00 per dog. CERF has adopted a policy effective Jan. 1st, 2001 (by post mark) that a permanent identification in the form of microchip, tattoo or DNA profile will be needed for any dog to be registered with CERF. The certification is good for 12 months from the date of the exam and afterwards the dog must be reexamined and recertified to maintain its' registration with CERF.
Regardless of the outcome of the dog's exam, the research copy of the CERF form will be sent to the CERF office at V.M.D.B (Veterinary Medical Database) where its information will be entered into the database for that specific breed. This information will be used in generating research reports, but the individual dog's identities will become confidential and will never be released.
WHAT CAN CERF DO FOR ME?
- Provide a registry of purebred dogs that have been certified free of heritable eye disease.
- Provide various memberships which include the CERF Newsletter, and various registration and research reports to keep you up-to-date on various topics in canine ophthalmology.
- Provide various reports on the prevalence of eye diseases in certain breeds, including reports generated by the Veterinary Medical Data Base (V.M.D.B.) which compiles data from 24 participating veterinary colleges in the U.S. and Canada.
- Provide a centralized source to answer questions like: - "Is there an A.C.V.O. Diplomate located near me?" -"Are there any published materials on eye disease in dogs that can help me to better understand my dog's condition?"
If you are interested in learning more about the CERF organization, the CERF process, or would like to inquire about the CERF status of a prospective mate for your dog, please don't hesitate to call or write. We'd love to assist you!
Note: This information was copied from the website with permission from Arthur M Siegel, DVM, PhD Program Manager.