My husband and I noticed a dog today that looked like a smaller version of a purebred Border Collie, although it didn't appear to be a puppy. It made us wonder if other animal species experience dwarfism.

Are dogs known to display a dwarfism gene?

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    $\begingroup$ What is a dwarfism gene? Just a gene that influence body size? Is the question "Do we know in other species (than dogs) genes (loci) that affect the body size?". If this is the question, the answer is yes. Dwarfism exist in humans for example. A lot of species are under directional of balance selection for body size. In general, insular population tend to be of smaller size (in response to selection, there is therefore a gene coding for body size), a phenomenon called insular dwarfism. $\endgroup$ – Remi.b Aug 6 '15 at 16:29
  • $\begingroup$ Canines can have pituitary problems just like people, but it's rare, just like in people. $\endgroup$ – rhill45 Aug 7 '15 at 4:11

The short answer is yes, other animals can experience dwarfism, including dogs, although it may not be what you are expecting. Dogs are apparently particularly susceptible but they often are a special case. We've so heavily bred dogs for whatever traits we desire, so now entire breeds are affected by dwarfism, such as dachshunds and corgis.

The reality is that dwarfism is a mosaic, with many types, and shouldn't be classified under one umbrella. You're probably mainly thinking of Achondroplasia, which is just one of many causes. You may also be aware of Hypothyroidism. Not every case looks like others, so in animals it may not be what you except. Other animals are susceptible, such as the sheep mentioned in the above articles, and horses, which are also a long-time target of selected breeding.

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