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annagmay

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Reply with quote  #126 
Hi Marge,

I'm sorry you feel that way about financially supporting the research to get the answers we need.  Hopefully you'll still encourage your friends and others to submit blood and more urine to the researchers to help find the answers we need and hopefully we'll be able to continue to keep the research going without your financial support. 

Please keep in mind that Danny's fund, the AKC/CHF Mastiff Donor Advised Fund and the MCOA Charitable Trust do not only support Cystinuria Research, but they also support several other Grants and cover several other diseases.  Without financial support, these studies cannot be done.  Without doing the studies and research, we will not get the answers that we need....

Did you ask this person with the borderline then negative test results if....
  • if her dog has a litter mate or close relative that has also tested positive on the NP cystine screening test
  • if she has gotten back to Dr. Giger and did she ask direct questions on the reasons for asking her to change the diet and to retest such as the possibility of reducing the risks of the dog forming calculi or stones
  • if she submitted blood samples from the dog in question to UPenn's research study
  • if she had a quantitative amino acid test ran on the dog
  • if the dog's affected relatives have donated blood and urine to the study
Also please keep in mind that regardless if someone is an MCOA member or non-member, we are all human and react to things differently and we all interpret things differently. 

We need financial support and we need blood, urine, and data to find the answers to this very complex puzzle. Of course we would love for UPenn to receive enough blood & urine samples to find the answers we need which will hopefully lead to a DNA test and a better screening tool as well as offer solid information on their diet theories regarding the molecular make up of the disease, but this won't happen if we cannot get more blood from Mastiffs submitted to UPenn.
 
Take care Marge, I think you are actually beginning to understand the complex nature of Cystinuria in Mastiffs and why it is so important that we find the answers we desperately need...

Anna

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Reply with quote  #127 
 
Take care Marge, I think you are actually beginning to understand the complex nature of Cystinuria in Mastiffs and why it is so important that we find the answers we desperately need...

Hi Anna May  ,
I do feel its very important ,to find out about Cystinuria .
I don't breed or show ,but i do feel this one, Illness we need to find out about .
And where it comes from ,BUT!! you come on the list,and explain ,what UPENN is doing and Finding ,

And then  you have a  top member ,in the MCOA ,saying they spoke with Geiger ,
And he says it all differently .than you .

You say ,its not the food ,a positive!! is a positive !!

Now he is telling Members there are Borderline ?????

And this has happened before ,Geigers tells people its the food , and you say a Positive is a Positive .

Now this was the funny part ,this person said it could be in the water ???

Until the Health Committee and Geiger get on the same page .

No money will be given from me anyway ,i will also ask ,that the Mastiff picnic no longer donate to this cause .

I think its time you all sit down ,and have a talk ,about who's giving out the right information .

Its either the health committee ! or Geiger !!!

I'm afraid id have to go with Geiger , since he is the Scientist ??


 

Take Care

Marge


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annagmay

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Reply with quote  #128 
I ran this part of the message (in quotes " ") I posted previously # 66 by Dr. Giger to make sure we were on the right page and I understood him correctly before I replied to a private e-mail and before I posted it to this message board:

"I was in contact with Angie and Dr. Giger and they prepared a memo and protocol to determine the effects of our regularly used diets and supplements. Apparently some people are feeding their Mastiffs very high protein diets and supplements.

The last I heard, PennVet still thinks the C+ dogs can't appropriately reabsorb the cystine through their kidneys and if given larger amounts it's not getting reabsorbed and thus dumped into the urine.  I thought they were focusing on protein supplements, but it was never clarified what supplements they were focusing on...  Some of the C+ Barf fed dogs are doing the same thing.  When you put them on a standard, commercial kibble, they go on to test normal.  The theory is that a truly C- dog can handle the extra protein and cystine and reabsorb it by the kidneys.  A C+ dog has a defect in its kidneys and therefore cannot handle the extra cystine load which results in dumping of cystine and other amino acids (COLAs) into the urine. 

The way I understood Dr. Giger, he does not think these dogs are false positives, but the extra supplements are identifying C+ dogs that may have gone undetected if they had not been fed the extra protein &/or amino acids.  Based upon his experience with other breeds he thinks that truly C- dogs will not show excess cystine in the urine when fed the same diet &/or supplements.  Also, if I understood Dr. Giger correctly they are hoping their study of the diet/supplement effects may help in more sensitively detecting Mastiffs at risk of cystinuria and other breeds as well as potentially lead to effective therapy.

Thanks again and let us hope these new efforts will allow us further to detect and prevent cystinuria in Mastiffs!!"

Ok the rest of this post has not been ran by Dr. Giger, it's from me.  Keep in mind Dr. Giger is trying to prove his theory through the diet study.  I personally want to see the researchers change their messages & theories as they learn new information that might change their theories... and I like that they are actively looking at things more closely. 

My desire is that we continue to support their studies in order for them to prove their theories to be right or wrong and that we can learn as they learn.  They need our help as Mastiff owners and breeders (to help them help us and our breed) to develop a DNA test for Cystinuria and hopefully be able to offer good, solid recommendations for preventative treatment options.  Until we have a DNA test for Mastiffs, I hope the researchers can develop a more sensitive urine screening test for Mastiffs.

If Dr. Giger told me something 6 months ago and it changes today, that may mean he ran more tests or has learned something new in the past 6 months....   Dr. Giger is human and he is like the rest of us; none of us like it when our words are twisted and when we are misunderstood...  It happens though, because humans are humans and we often interpret things differently...  It doesn't make any of us better or worse than one another, it just means we believe things differently according to how we interpret the information we were given.  It's also true that we have to word things differently to different people when trying to communicate with each other.

If we truly want to to know if our Mastiffs are C+ or if Cystinuria is in our lines (due to the possibility of fluctuating cystine levels in the urine), we should start testing at 18 months of age and again at 24 months of age and if the dogs are being used at stud retest them every 6 months on popular sires and a couple months before each breeding on dogs that are not used at stud that often....  We should also Cystinuria test as many close relatives as possible and then figure out who has it and who doesn't and then we need to submit blood samples on the dogs according to UPenn's requests for samples. 

We can start testing younger than 18 months if we are very suspicious, but we need to keep testing as in most Mastiffs it is a late onset disease and the elevated cystine doesn't normally start showing up on the routine NP urine test until around 18 or 24 months of age.  That can have variations as well, but that is typically the norm.

As we test and re-test more dogs, we might realize that these recommended date ranges might need to be revised as well.  We're all learning as we move forward with this.

Anna

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Reply with quote  #129 
I'm just sure it's in here somewhere (I just looked on the MCOA site and couldn't find it there either)  but... what is the website that gives information about where/how to send in test samples? 
I've read a lot of this thread and will read it all eventually... just would like a place to go to get the form. 
Thanks!!

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Judi Mott
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Reply with quote  #130 
Found it!  (I just didn't go deep enough into the Health pages on MCOA)
Here's the basic info ...   and more at http://mastiff.org/health/cystine.htm 

To have your mastiff tested for Cystinuria:

Print out this linked form to submit liquid urine in a tube (an interactive .pdf). Important: feed your Mastiff 2 to 4 hours prior to collection of urine. Collect at least 3 to 5 milliliter (3-5 cc) urine in a very clean container, for instance, a sterile glass or plastic tube with appropriate lids from your local veterinarian. You may wish to store the liquid urine samples in the freezer until you have collected all samples for shipment.

Ship by overnight mail in appropriate mailer, with an ice pack. Include a completed submission form (an interactive .pdf) and check payable to Trustees, Univ. of Penn. for $40 per dog.  Please call UPenn directly (215) 898-3375 for a Kennel Rate Discount when multiple dogs will be collected and submitted together and the results will be reported to one individual.

Mail to:

University of Pennsylvania
School of Veterinary Medicine
The Josephine Deubler Genetic Disease Testing Lab
3850 Spruce Street, Room 4006
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6010
PH: (215) 898-3375 Fax: (215) 573-2162
Website
Email

The results will be sent to you within 10 days of reciept of the samples. ALL identifying information is kept STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL and is seen only by members of the research team at University of Pennsylvania. If your dog has tested positive for the nitroprusside urine screening test, and you need to submit blood samples, please use the consent form  


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Judi Mott
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Reply with quote  #131 
Hi Judi :>)

I think that is obsolete info


The site is out dated ,Im sure MCOA is working on it

Marge

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Reply with quote  #132 
Oh, NO!  Well, would someone please post it if they know the link?
thanks, Marge!


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Judi Mott
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Reply with quote  #133 
Hi Judi ,
That was the only link ,
IWas told it was to be updated ,a few months ago .
But Its not , i think the price has changed ,I want to say 6o.oo
But im not sure ,

Take Care and Good luck with the new Pups :>)
Marge

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Reply with quote  #134 
want to say 6o.oo

HI ,
I was wrong the price is 40.00
I know i had Dyce tested i took him to a Vet to have it done ,

So between office Call and vet visit  and the shipping ,it was 110 .00

Sorry Judi

Marg e

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Mitzi

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Reply with quote  #135 

Our club got together and submitted a bunch of specimens and the price was $20 per sample for 12 tests....shipping is an additional cost.

The link is on the website on the health page. http://ohiovalleymastiffs.com/Health.html

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Reply with quote  #136 
Both links say it's $20 (on the form itself)... 


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Reply with quote  #137 

yep, that's what it was...we did this in February 2009 when we met at the Indianapolis show....we will be doing it again


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Reply with quote  #138 
This a very interesting article on the basis of HUMAN Cystinuria. If the human form is even vaguely related to the canine form, it may tell us why it doesn't fit the STRICLTY x-linked recessive model and why certain matings seem more "prone" to cystinuria...
http://www.cystinuria.org/resources/education/genetics/

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annagmay

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Reply with quote  #139 

"If you don't test, then you don't know"

Right now I'm aware of three tests available to identify Mastiffs with Cystinuria (elevated cystine in the urine with or without stone formation). The NP Urine screening test, Quantitative Amino Acid Test, and Stone Analysis. Due to the fluctuating cystine levels (and possibly other reasons) in C+ Mastiff's urine, the C+ dogs might not test positive on every test and may or may not form stones. If we really want to know the status of Mastiffs, we have to keep testing and hope that if our boys are C+ that one of the tests shows the excess cystine in the urine. Not the answer we want, but the only way we're going to know unless the dog actually forms cystine calculi or stones. It is a huge complicater and very frustrating for breeders when trying to screen for Cystinuria when the cystine levels fluctuate, but this actually is good for the C+ Mastiffs as they are at a higher risk of forming cystine stones and becoming obstructed when their kidneys (protein transporters) are not functioning correctly and the excess cystine is showing up in the bladder. When the cystine levels are within normal range in the bladder, the C+ Mastiff's risks of forming stones and obstructing is reduced. Of course keeping the dogs hydrated by offering lots of fresh, clean water is extremely important too. We do not want the urine to become too concentrated.

Unfortunately, here in the USA there are some breeders that do not want to know the actual Cystinuria status of their dogs. If they want to know, they're going to have to test their dogs. If they are using the dogs at stud it is especially important that they keep re-testing. They should also encourage the breeders (that breed their bitches to their stud dogs) to require it of their puppy buyers (in the contracts) when they become teenagers and young adults and at a minimum repeat it annually…. Test, test, test….

It is not that the NP urine test is inaccurate, it just isn't sensitive enough when trying to detect lower cystine levels (yet still considered excess amounts) in some Mastiffs. When the cystine levels fluctuate we are forced to test and retest our boys.

If anyone (human or animal) has excess cystine in their urine, they are at a higher risk of developing calculi or stones.

If we really want to be pro-active and know what we have, we have to encourage testing of as many dogs in our pedigrees as we can.  If we have a C+ dog that fluctuates C+ & C- it is even more important to test the dog's close relatives, especially the males.  We should test our males, the grandsons as well as the brothers and uncles...  Basically is we test as many close relatives as possible it should help us and UPenn understand the mode of inheritance better.

So if we don't test, we can't identify the C+ dogs unless they actually form cystine calculi.

if we don't test the grandsons of the C+ dogs and the C+ dog's full & half brothers then we won't understand the mode of inheritance.

So again, if we don't test, then we don't know...

>>> "if you do test, then you still don't know">>>

And yes, it is very unfortunate and extremely frustrating and often confusing that not all C+ Mastiffs will test C+ on the NP urine screening test and in some dogs the test results might change from positive to negative to positive...  If we submit urine and blood on these dogs, the researchers might find elevated COLA levels when they run the quantitative amino acid tests and they might get hits on their genome when they run the SNP tests. So we have to submit blood samples as well as urine when participating in the research and we should submit calculi and stones for analysis… Yep, more tests….

Snip…..>>>It is not a simple or cheap exercise to test when you live outside USA and timing with shipping is a big issue (as I found out). It would be good for breeders in other countries to test, but I can't really see it happening until as Marge says, things get straightened out, but also I think until there is a more conclusive outcome.>>>

VERY UNFORTUNATE INDEED!!! Maybe you can try some of these ideas...

  • Look for lab (private or university) maybe even a human lab that would be willing to work with dogs in your country or a nearby country
  • organize clinics and get several breed clubs to pitch in funds and pay the shipping (suggested breeds to help: Irish terriers, Scottish Deerhounds, Dachshunds, Bull Dogs, Basset hounds,…)
  • make the health clinics a semi annual or annual event at one of your bigger breed clubs
  • treat it like shipping semen or shipping puppies
  • go to the MCOA National Specialty and bring it with you (get a Veterinarian Note just in case)

Good luck, it's hard enough here in the states to get breeders to test their dogs and test dogs in their lines, so I cannot imagine the frustration you must feel when it is so expensive and complicated to submit samples, then have to try to get others to test as well. The only things I can think of right now for foreign countries is to organize clinics & share the expenses or to find a nearby private company, human lab or university that will work with the breed clubs, breeders, and veterinarians to allow canine Cystinuria testing as well...

By the way, here in the USA the Minnesota Urolith Center at the University of Minnesota will analyze canine urinary stones for FREE due to funding and support from Hill's Diet. It does not mean you have to feed the diet. although they'll probably recommend a Hill's prescription diet. Maybe you can get one of your successful prescription dog food companies to do the same in your country if they are not doing it for free already. If we have suspicious reoccurring urinary tract infections, we can try to collect calculi with a tropical fish net or a coffee filter or have our veterinarians collect the calculi from the urine  and if we find any we can submit them to the Minnesota Urolith Center as long as we follow their instructions on submitting the samples. Yes, more tests….

So, that is the meaning behind "if you don't test, then you don't know",

Anna


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annagmay

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Reply with quote  #140 
snip...
>>>cystine levels fluctuate, but this actually is good for the C+ Mastiffs as they >>>

I don't think that made sense.  It is good for Mastiffs to have the cystine levels fluctuate since at times the levels go down which decreases the risk of stone formation.  When the cystine levels go up, that is not good at all.  In C+ Newfies that genetically test positive for Cystinuria through DNA testing, they always have detectable elevated cystine levels in their urine and those dogs form stones much more often than Mastiffs.

I hope that makes more sense...

Anna

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Reply with quote  #141 
I reside in the state of California and have been researching the mastiff breed.  I would like to own a mastiff one day.  I read this board as often as I can.  It has been a week or better since I have read.  This thread is quite frightening to someone such as myself looking into the breed.  Most of my time lately has been viewing websites and pedigrees.  I find that one of the highly influential and primary breeders in California with wonderful dogs does not test for this C+ problem, at least their website does not elude to them testing.

There are many other breeders whose sites I have visited that do  not appear to advertise testing on the C+.

I am confused as I read this information, as this seems serious, even though their are conflicting opinions here, why more prominent breeders do not list this as testing.

Is it because many of those breeders do not trust the test as it is today?

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Reply with quote  #142 
Hi Louise,

First, not every breeder advertises every thing they do on their website.  I have been testing for Cystinuria since 1997, and fortunately all my dogs are negative.  However, you won't find mention of that on my website, nor much about health testing, though I do it all.  I would expect people doing their research into a breed to want to confirm any health testing statements through the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (http://www.offa.org).  By clicking on *Search Records* you can verify health testing of any dog or kennel you are interested in.

The lack of statements about health testing would not alarm me since I would want to verify the health testing through the OFA page anyway.  Less than 10 years ago breeders struggled with PRA and managed to get the problem solved.  I think the same will happen with Cystinuria since Mastiff fanciers are now becoming very aware of the magnitude of the problem. 

Good luck in your search for a puppy.

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LouiseA

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Reply with quote  #143 
Thank you Caroline for replying to me.  I had not been to your website before.  I was able to go to your site and as you said, there are no testing results.  I was able to find your dogs on the link you provided.  I have been to the orthopedic site before but I cannot find the C+ results on that site for your dogs or other dogs whom I like.  Is that where they would be listed?  Is there another site where a breeder would list results for C+ or C-?  If not, when I am ready to contact breeders should I ask them about this testing and to provide a statement of a C+ or C- for any dogs in their pedigree that would be related to a puppy I might be interested in?  If they do not provide it, should I cross them off my list?

I am very appreciative for the help.

Thank you.

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Reply with quote  #144 
The cystinuria data isn't on the OFA website. I would ask if I were you. UPENN sends a form showing they were tested and what the results were to the owner so you can ask for a copy of the certificate to verify testing. Some of us have a scan of the form attached to our website showing the results of testing.  

Several things to keep in mind: 1.) Girls don't need to have the test because they will show negative no matter what. 2.) Boys don't commonly show up positive until they are older, so it's a good idea to make sure the boy has been tested once he's mature (over 3 years old). 3.) There is no open registry of cystinuria data. Pretty much, we are at the mercy of honesty. 4.) Finally, if anyone tells you that there's NEVER been an cystinuria ANYWHERE in their lines, I personally would be hesitant to believe it. Unfortunately, testing for it is just becoming more routine and so in many cases, we haven't had the information to know who has it in their lines. It's turning up in MANY lines and since there's no DNA test and the mode of inheritance is still unknown, we just have to attempt to do the best we can to breed away from it and not double up on it in any lines...a very tall order at this point in time!!



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Reply with quote  #145 
Hi Louise and Teresa,

Actually, if you clicked on Comstock's Listen To Your Heart, you will see the results of the NP test listed and age tested (73 months).  You can also find that for Comstock's Rio Grande on the OFA website.  One other of the 5 males was tested after 6 years (Comstock's Run For the Roses) and is also negative, but since he isn't offered at stud, I didn't bother sending in his application.  Two other brothers were negative at 16 months, but again not offered at stud, so not on the OFA website.

I really think it would be beneficial if UPenn could list the negative dogs (male and female) like Optigen lists those tested for PRA. 

Hope this helps you in your search.



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Reply with quote  #146 
Hi Louise,

Now that I think about it, I did send in Riles' cystinuria testing, so he should have that result listed as well.  I know I'm getting old when I can't remember who has been tested for what.

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Teresa

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Reply with quote  #147 

Hey Caroline, How did you get the NP test on the OFA site? I have Kodi's, but it isn't showing up. I'd like it to be listed. Thanks, Teresa


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Reply with quote  #148 
Hi Teresa,

Fill out the Genetic Disease Application and submit with copy of UPenn Results and Pedigree...I think that is what is required.  The fee is $15/dog or $30 for 3 littermates.  I'm not sure if they required permanent identification and/or AKC DNA profile or not.  I know they did on PRADNA certification by parentage.  Both sire/dam had to be DNA profiled at time of testing. Can you tell it has been a few months since I did this?

Though it is a bit of a pain to go thru this, it is really the only way of listing negative dogs at this time.

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Reply with quote  #149 

As far as purchasing a puppy from tested parents or a tested line goes in "any breed" that can have Cystinuria or any other disease or disorder, it might not be that easy.  The same goes for trying to find a stud dog. It's going to take some time and a lot more educational outreach to get more breeders on board.  Unfortunately at this time there are only a couple breeders that have been Cystinuria testing families of dogs, so it will be very hard (possibly impossible) to find a puppy from a complete line of Cystinuria tested dogs especially if you’re expecting all of the dogs to have tested clear as adults.  The least we can hope for is that the parents are Cystinuria tested and maybe some of the relatives of the parents such as brothers and sons.  You can always offer to pay for the Cystinuria tests and other health tests on the parents (or stud dog) and see what the breeder says.  Some breeders might find this very offensive and others might say sure, I’m willing to do it if you want to pay for it. 

 

If you do not want to breed your Mastiff, then it should be safer to purchase a female Mastiff as we are not aware of a female Mastiff that has ever blocked from cystine stones.  Actually we're only aware of one female Mastiff that has tested positive on the urine screening test and she disappeared and is no longer available to participate in the research...  This does not mean that a female is not affected or a carrier, it may only mean that the current tests are not sensitive enough to detect the cystine in her urine or she might not be excreting excess cystine.  This is an area of huge concern.  We need to be able to identify the bitches as well as the dogs.  It is still encouraged that we continue to test the girls for at least the statistical data and if we ever identify an affected female, it will be a major help to the research if we submit blood from her.

 

If you plan on purchasing a Mastiff for future breeding, then you should look at the entire Mastiff when she is mature and evaluate her temperament, breed type, and her testing information.  There is a lot to consider in addition to Cystinuria as it is only one small piece of the BIG picture... 

 

Please understand this is NOT only a Mastiff problem; it is a problem that can affect many breeds of dogs, other animals and humans.  Cystinuria research has even been documented in Siamese cats, but I'm not sure if the Siamese cat people really discuss it on message boards or not.

In the mean time, I hope and pray that the researchers can come up with better diagnostic tests and cheaper, more effective treatment options and hopefully an actual DNA test for Cystinuria in Mastiffs and other breeds.

 
Anna
 
=================

 


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Teresa

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Reply with quote  #150 

Thanks Anna...I stand corrected on the girls. I see where testing is important if for no other reason, to keep accurate records...


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