Arabians, pure and part-bred
Friesians, pure and part-bred
Fell Ponies, Dale Ponies and Gypsy horses, pure and part-bred
Quarter horses and related breeds, pure and part-bred
Saddlebred and related breeds, pure and part-bred
Coat colour tests
Severe combined immune deficiency (SCID) can appear in pure- and part-bred Arabians. Horses affected by SCID lack a functional immune system and are unable to fight infections. In their first few months foals are protected by antibodies in the mare's colostrum but as this protection declines their lack of immune system becomes apparent. The most common signs are respiratory illness, intermittent fever and/or diarrhoea. There is currently no effective treatment for SCID.
SCID is an autosomal recessive disorder. Autosomal disorders are equally likely to affect male or female horses, while "recessive" means that a horse needs to inherit the SCID mutation from both its sire and its dam to be affected. Horses that have inherited the SCID mutation from just one parent are called SCID carriers, and do not have physical signs of this disorder.
Any SCID carrier can potentially produce a foal suffering from SCID. Fortunately this is easily avoided: you simply need to ensure that the prospective foal cannot inherit the SCID mutation from both its sire and its dam. Therefore, if you have a SCID carrier horse and it is mated to a SCID-clear horse there is no risk of the foal being affected with SCID.
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