Dr. Paul W. Poulos, Jr., GDC executive director and board president since 1991, announced his retirement from those positions as of June 1, 2002.
Dr. Poulos led GDC from its early days through 11 years of growth, and finally to a successful merge with OFA.
has also worked on an international level to raise understanding and acceptance of the principles of open sharing of health information.
and the purebred dog community recognize the major contributions that Dr. Poulos
has made towards improving the health of dogs, as well as the passionate advocacy with which he
pursued those goals Dr. Poulos
will continue his
consulting veterinary radiology practice from his
office in Ukiah, California.
We couldn't have reached this point without Dr. Poulos
, and I want to extend my deepest gratitude to him for all the work he's
done in the past 11 years."
"This is a very promising development," said GDC executive director Dr. Paul W. Poulos, Jr. "We are seeing a high level of concern about genetic disease from breeders in the US and many other countries.
"There are huge benefits to breeders in combining the GDC and OFA databases," said Dr. Poulos, "but at the same time we needed to be certain that GDC customers will have essentially the same access to the information as they now have.
Paul W. Poulos, Jr. DVM, PhD
Executive Director, GDC
“Despite repeated calls from the world’s top canine geneticists during the past ten years for the use of complete and unrestricted open registries to fight genetic disease, the AKC and the majority of the purebred fancy have actively resisted adopting this proven tool,” said Dr. Paul W. Poulos, Jr., executive director of GDC.
According to Dr. Poulos
has not been able to meet its expectations for useful volumes of registered dogs in large part because of the reluctance of the majority of the breeding community to release information about any dogs who are affected with genetic disease.
“It is no surprise that here in the US we have made almost no progress in reducing the most serious diseases known or suspected to be genetic such as hip dysplasia and cancer if we refuse to share information about which dogs may be carrying the defective genes,” said Poulos
“Our shift in focus is driven by the realization that the best open registry in the world won’t help if breeders won’t use it or don’t understand how to use it in their day-to-day breeding decisions,” explained Poulos
During the past ten years GDC has worked with many breed groups to establish more than two dozen specific genetic disease registries and now has a number of new requests in progress.
However, according to Dr. Poulos
, getting a significant number of breeders and owners to actually register their dogs is an uphill battle.
"This past year at GDC
we have seen a sharp increase in requests from breeders for help with breeding decisions," said Poulos
noted that the current excitement in the purebred fancy about the potential for genetic testing via DNA has all but eclipsed interest in the use of other methods to control genetic disease.
“GDC will continue to register dogs in existing registries over the next year,” said Poulos