The OFA databases are central to the organization’s objective of establishing control programs to lower the incidence of inherited disease. They serve all breeds of dogs and cats, and provide breeders a means to respond to the challenge of improving the genetic health of their breed through better breeding practices. The OFA databases are expanded as more tests become available.
History of OFA
The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) was founded as a private, not-for-profit foundation in 1966 by John M. Olin, a well-known inventor, industrialist, philanthropist, conservationist, and sportsman. Olin was an avid sportsman, hunter, and field trial participant. When hip dysplasia began to impact the performance of Olin’s dogs, he organized an initial meeting with representatives of the veterinary community, the Golden Retriever Club of America, and the German Shepherd Dog Club of America to discuss means of limiting the disease. This ultimately led to the formation and incorporation of the OFA. Its initial mission: To provide radiographic evaluation, data management, and genetic counseling for canine hip dysplasia. While the OFA continues to focus on hip dysplasia, today’s mission, “To improve the health and well-being of companion animals through a reduction in the incidence of genetic disease,” reflects the organization’s expansion into other inherited diseases and other companion animals such as cats.
The Best of the Best
We encourage our select breeders to obtain OFA certification of both the Sire and the Dam in order to assure our clients that their new baby is coming home free from genetic defects that are common with specific breeds. An example would be having OFA certification from both the Sire and Dam for hips with a German Shepherd, because hip issues are a common occurrence for this breed!