Acral Mutilation Syndrome

Acral Mutilation Syndrome (AMS) is a sensory neuropathy leading to loss of pain sensitivity.

The clinical signs appear between 3 months and a half to a year. Affected dogs lick themselves, nibble and severely mutilate the extremities of the legs, causing ulcers to appear and then become affected. In the most severe cases, this leads to self-amputations of claws, fingers and pads. One or more legs can be affected. The affected dogs walk normally and without showing signs of pain, lameness or ataxia in the affected limb. The AMS of the French Spaniel could be closer to certain hereditary sensory and autonomous human neuropathies. Other breeds of hunting dogs are also affected by this syndrome. Indeed, it has been described in the German Pointer, the English Pointer and the Springer Spaniel, in different countries of Europe and the World

This research project, conducted in our team in close collaboration with Drs. Eric Guaguère, Pascal Prélaud, Christine Cadiergue, Didier Pin, Alix Pommier and Manon Paradis (Canada), as well as the assistance of other veterinary practitioners and breeders, allowed the identification of the mutation responsible for this affection in four breeds (Spaniel French, German Pointer, English Pointer and Springer Spaniel). If you know of other breeds, please also contact us.

We collect samples of dog breeds affected by AMS. Thus, we need blood samples from many dogs (affected, carriers or unaffected) and their relatives to extract the DNA. The search strategy for genetic causes consists in comparing the genomes (all 38 chromosomes + XY) of a large number of affected and unaffected dogs to identify the chromosomal region (s) containing the gene (s) involved ( s) in the ADM and the causal mutation (s).

To participate in this research project, please send us:

  • a blood sample on EDTA tube: CNRS_SMA_Protocole
  • the completed clinical questionnaire: CNRS_SMA_Questionnaire
  • a copy of the pedigree (if possible and if available)
  • a picture of your dog (lesions).

We recall that the data collected at the CNRS remain confidential.

For more information, and if you know of a dog affected by this syndrome, you can contact our team by phone at 02 23 23 45 09 or be email

Articles in the press about this research project::