Degenerative myelopathy (DM)


Canine degenerative myelopathy (DM) is a disorder that occurs relatively late in a dog's life, usually around age 8. The first signs are lameness or toe dragging in the hind legs. The disorder will persist and get worse, leading to complete paralysis of the back legs and then progression further up the body.

DM is common in Corgis and German Shepherds and is also found more rarely in a wide range of other breeds. Jayne, the lab mascot, who looks a Boxer x Amstaff or similar is a DM carrier.

Dogs that have two copies of the DM gene are at high risk of developing DM.

DM is an autosomal recessive disorder. Autosomal disorders are equally likely to affect male or female dogs, while "recessive" means that a dog needs to inherit the DM mutation from both its parents to be affected.

Gene or region and technical reference

Gene: SOD1 (causative). Reference: Awano et al. (2009)
Patent (ceased)

Reported alleles

n. Test developed using manufactured DNA, animal controls.

DM. Test developed using manufactured DNA, animal cases.

Panels: groups of tests that are often ordered together

This test is in the Australian Kelpie panel.


Order tests

There is a one-off sample processing fee of $40 per animal plus the cost of your tests.

How many animals are you testing? Discount or society code:


Colour panels

$25 Brown coat colour ... more

Working dogs

$59 Australian Kelpie panel ... more

$26 Working dog CA (CA panel) ... more

$54 Working dog core panel ... more

Good looks

Coat characteristics

$9 Coat length L (common form) (L) ... more

$9 Coat length L2 (L2) ... more

$9 Curly coat ... more

$9 Improper coat ... more

Good health

Australian Kelpies

$14 Intestinal lipid malabsorption (ILM) ... more

Good looks

Coat colour

$9 Brown (bc allele) ... more

$9 Brown (bd allele) ... more

$9 Brown (bs allele) ... more

$9 Dilution type 2 ... more

Good health

Multiple breeds

$14 Degenerative myelopathy (DM)

$14 Progressive retinal atrophy - PRCD (PRA-PRCD) ... more

Working dogs

$14 Cerebellar abiotrophy marker (LINGO3) (CA: LINGO3) ... more

$14 Cerebellar abiotrophy marker (VMP1) (CA: VMP1) ... more

$14 Collie eye anomaly (CEA) ... more

$14 Trapped neutrophil syndrome (TNS) ... more

Tests can be in the list more than once when the gene in question has more than one effect. It is OK to select the same test once or more than once, the price is the same.