Canine Familial Nephropathy | Animal Genetics



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Familial Nephropathy (FN)


Familial Nephropathy (FN) is a fatal kidney disease that occurs in English Cocker Spaniels. Affected dogs are born with an abnormal structure in the capillary walls of their kidney tubules and are unable to remove waste products from their blood through urination. COL4A3 and COL4A4 are two genes associated with the formation of peptides (protein) in the capillary walls. Mutation in these genes disrupts the integrity of the capillary walls and causes progressive renal damage in the dog. FN is an autosomal recessive disease, meaning that having one copy of the mutation is not fatal (carrier). Two mutated copies of the gene must be inherited from the parents to develop the disease.

FN is a juvenile-onset disease, occurring between the ages of 6 months to 2 years old. The progression of the disease varies in affected dogs. Some individuals may rapidly develop chronic renal failure faster than others, eventually leading to the failing of both kidneys and death.

Early signs of FN include excessive water consumption, excessive urine volume, weight loss, poor quality fur coat, reduced appetite, and vomiting. High levels of protein in the urine are often linked to FN in English Cocker Spaniels.

Acceptable Sample Types:

Animal Genetics accepts buccal swab, blood, and dewclaw samples for testing. Complimentary sample collection kits are available and can be ordered at Canine Test Now.

This Test Is Relevant For the Following Breeds:

  • English Cocker Spaniel


Animal Genetics offers DNA testing for canine Familial Nephropathy. The genetic test verifies the presence of the recessive Familial Nephropathy mutation and presents results as one of the following:

FN/FN Affected The dog carries two copies of the mutant gene and is homozygous for Familial Nephropathy. The dog is affected by canine FN and will always pass a copy of the mutation to its offspring.
n/FN Carrier Both the normal and mutant copies of the gene detected. Dog is a carrier for the canine Familial Nephropathy mutation and can pass on a copy of the defective gene to its offspring.
n/n Clear Dog tested negative for the mutation and will not pass on the defective gene to its offspring.