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Breeder Information (Germany): As of January 2018, the Connemara Pony Interessengemeinschaft e.V. (CP-IG) and the Connemarapony Vereinigung e.V. (CPV) require that all foals are tested for HWSD, or that both of their parents have already been tested normal. More information is available in the information flyers provided by each club (available only in German). Special order forms are available for members of the CPV or the CP-IG.

Hoof Wall Separation Disease (HWSD)

→ Separation of the Hoof and Hoofwall


  • Unstabile, brittle hoofwall
  • Inflammation of the hooves
  • Hoof pain

General Information:

  • The first symptoms are commonly noticed within the first year.
  • As the hoofwall separates from the hoof, the horse can become lame.
  • Although some affected horses have minimal symptoms, the worst cases can require euthanasia because of severe pain.

Inheritance: autosomal recessive

→ The pony is only affected when both copies of the gene (hwsd/hwsd) have the mutation.  Ponies with only one copy of the mutation (N/hwsd) are clinically normal carriers.

Possible Genotypes:

Genotype: The horse is: Effects:
N/N normal. The horse has no copies of the genetic variant causative for HWSD and therefore cannot pass it on to its offspring.
N/hwsd a carrier. The horse is clinically normal. The variant will be passed on to its offspring with a probability of 50%.
hwsd/hwsd affected. The variant will be passed on to its offspring with a probability of 100%. All offspring will be carriers (N/hwsd).



  • Carriers may be bred to normal animals (N/hwsd x N/N) without any risk of producing affected offspring. The offspring should also be tested before breeding to determine if they are carriers or normal.
  • Breeding two carriers (N/hwsd x N/hwsd) is not recommended due to the possibility of 25% of the offspring being affected.
  • Affected animals (hwsd/hwsd) may only be paired with non-carriers (N/N) following a critical review of the breeding value of the animal.

Test Information: This mutation test identifies a single base pair insertion in the SERPINB11 gene.

Finno, C.J., Stevens, C., Young, A., Affolter, V., Joshi, N.A., Ramsay, S., Bannasch, D.L.: SERPINB11 Frameshift Variant Associated with Novel Hoof Specific Phenotype in Connemara Ponies. PLoS Genet 11:e1005122, 2015. Pubmed reference: 25875171. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1005122.

Further Information is available on the OMIA website: Online Mendelian Inheritance in Animals.

Affected Breed:

Test #: H116

Samples: Blood, Hair

Special price: 30 € (net)

Combo-Package (HWSD+ID test): 50 € (net)

Time required: 10-14 days

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