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Can J Vet Res. 2011 Jul;75(3):209-15.

Breed-specific incidence rates of canine primary bone tumors--a population based survey of dogs in Norway.

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Small Animal Section, Department of Companion Animal Clinical Sciences, Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, Oslo, Norway.


This is one of few published population-based studies describing breed specific rates of canine primary bone tumors. Incidence rates related to dog breeds could help clarify the impact of etiological factors such as birth weight, growth rate, and adult body weight/height on development of these tumors. The study population consisted of dogs within 4 large/giant breeds; Irish wolfhound (IW), Leonberger (LB), Newfoundland (NF), and Labrador retriever (LR), born between January 1st 1989 and December 31st 1998. Questionnaires distributed to owners of randomly selected dogs--fulfilling the criteria of breed, year of birth, and registration in the Norwegian Kennel Club--constituted the basis for this retrospective, population-based survey. Of the 3748 questionnaires received by owners, 1915 were completed, giving a response rate of 51%. Forty-three dogs had been diagnosed with primary bone tumors, based upon clinical examination and x-rays. The breeds IW and LB, with 126 and 72 cases per 10 000 dog years at risk (DYAR), respectively, had significantly higher incidence rates of primary bone tumors than NF and LR (P < 0.0001). Incidence rates for the latter were 11 and 2 cases per 10 000 DYAR, respectively. Pursuing a search for risk factors other than body size/weight is supported by the significantly different risks of developing primary bone tumors between similarly statured dogs, like NF and LB, observed in this study. Defining these breed-specific incidence rates enables subsequent case control studies, ultimately aiming to identify specific etiological factors for developing primary bone tumors.

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