LUA vs. HUA
LUA-Low Uric Acid (N/Hu, N/N):
LUA starts for low uric acid, which really just means normal uric acid. Dalmatians with one or two copies of the LUA (or normal uric acid) gene are unaffected by the genetic defect called hyperuricosuria/High uric acid. Only one copy of the normal "N" gene is necessary for the dog to be free from hyperuricosuria. LUA Dalmatians have normal levels of uric acid and they are not prone to forming the kidney and bladder stones and other problems that be caused by hyperuricosuria. LUA Dalmatians can eat a normal diet. LUA Dalmatians are the result of an outcross project and were accepted into AKC in 2011. You can read more about LUA Dalmatians and the backcross project that created them HERE N/Hu Dalmatians, if bred, will have a 50/50% chance of passing on either the HUA(Hu) or LUA (N) gene to their offspring. N/N Dalmatians, if bred, will pass on the LUA (N) gene to 100% of their offspring.
HUA-High Uric Acid (Hu/Hu):
Most Dalmatians are HUA. Up until 2011, all AKC registered Dalmatians were HUA. HUA means high uric acid. These dogs are prone to forming kidney/bladder stones and they need a diet low in purines, lots of water and frequent potty breaks to prevent this problem. By following the instructions detailed HERE, owners can greatly decrease the chances of a Dalmatian forming stones. HUA Dalmatians are genetically recessive for the hyperuricosuria defect, therefor, if two HUA (Hu/Hu) Dalmatians are bred together, 100% of the offspring will be HUA. Only by breeding with a N/Hu or N/N LUA Dalmatian can a HUA produce LUA offspring.
Using litter numbers from my previous litters, I was able to gather some very sad data.
Did you know that 99.9% of Dalmatians are being born with the health defect called hyperuricosuria (referred to as HUA--high uric acid)?
This genetic health defect causes Dalmatians to require a special diet low in purines and puts them at a greater risk for forming kidney/bladder stones and potentially life threatening blockages that could cost their owners thousands of dollars to remove.
Less than 0.1% of Dalmatians are born LUA (low uric acid), meaning they inherited at least one copy of the "normal" gene and therefore they are not affected by hyperuricosuria, they do not require a special diet and they are not at a greater risk for forming kidney/bladder stones and blockages.
Here is the data to support these numbers, using my own litter registration numbers.
Litters from LUA bloodlines have the prefix NY (NOTE: having this prefix does NOT automatically mean a dog is LUA...that requires DNA testing via cheek swab). Litters from HUA bloodlines have the prefix NP (this DOES guarantee that a Dalmatian is HUA).
Litter #: NY000154-Born 5/14/2017 (Gypsy x Red)
Litter #: NY000204-Born 5/14/2018 (Scarlett x Jax)
-About 50 lua litters were registered with AKC in the 12 month period between May 2017 and May 2018.
Litter #: NP450,687 Born 12/10/2016 (Perdita and Zeke)
Litter #: NP489 713 Born 1/28/2018 (Perdita and Zeke)
-Almost 40,000 hua litters were registered with AKC in the 13 month period between Dec 2016 and Jan 2018
This means that, in 2017, only about 0.1% of AKC registered Dalmatian litters had LUA puppies born in them.
Now take into account that a lot of LUA litters have both LUA and HUA puppies....and suddenly you see how few and far in between LUA Dalmatians really are.
Now, the number of LUA litters being registered every year is slowly on the rise, but only very slowly when compared to the number of HUA litters being registered. While I don't have the data for the number of HUA litters born in 2018-2019, I do have data for LUA litters born during that time.
Litter #: NY000190 Born 1/21/2018 (Shelby and Jax)
Litter #: NY000266 Born 1/26/2019 (Shelby and Jax)
-So about 76 LUA litters were registered with AKC in the 12 month period between Jan 2018 and Jan 2019.
This is why I am so passionate about helping other breeders incorporate the LUA gene into their HUA bloodlines. I believe in IMPROVING the health of the breed I have spent my whole life loving and I know this is a battle breeders must win together. The Dalmatian breed has several major health issues that breeders can go a long way towards fixing by utilizing BAER and hyperuricosuria testing, and making breeding choices that focus on better health. Dalmatian breeders need to work TOGETHER to increase the number of puppies born free from the consequences of hyperuricosuria. For the love of our spotted dogs, who deserve nothing but the best, we breeders need to change these numbers.