Your mutt is a mix of breeds and “deciphering” the breed-mix is quite a challenge. Having a mixed breed is always a surprise, one never knows what to expect. There are around 400 breeds of dogs known but the majority of dogs in households are actually mixed breeds. Nowadays, one can easily get a breed verification DNA test. This test has many uses- by knowing the breeds carried in your dog’s genetic makeup you can have a good idea of the personality traits and temperament of the dog as well as any genetic illnesses the dog might be predisposed to. It is only through a canine DNA test that you can know the breeds within your dog’s DNA. Breed verification tests can even give a very strong indication as to whether your dog is a pure breed.
Clearly, you will need to get a DNA sample from the dog. Generally, you can take a simple DNA saliva sample by rubbing a sterile mouth swab around the inside of the mouth of your dog. This procedure can be done at home by the dog owner and does not require veterinary assistance. However, for a blood withdrawal from the dog you will need a vet.
Knowing which conditions your dog might be predisposed to can help you find an optimal diet for the dog or perhaps even be crucial for a vet to know should the dog be required to undergo an operation. In terms of temperament and behavioral patterns, knowing the breeds in your dog’s genetic makeup can assist when training a dog or helping them deal with certain behavioral issues as might be characteristic of a certain breed of dog. The American Kennel Club provides invaluable guidelines and information about dog breeds, training and other important aspects of owning a dog.
Knowing the temperament of a dog and its personality traits might help a potential dog owner make his or her choice; they may wish to choose a dog that has the right character for their life style, home and family. A dog that might be a mixed breed with a dog known to be aggressive might not be suitable for a family with young children. A canine test can even help when adopting a mutt puppy; you may want to have an idea of just how large the animal will grow and the demands it will place upon your lifestyle.
A dog DNA test can give you not only an indication of the breeds, but the breeds which are most prominent in the DNA of your dog. They will tell you in terms of a percentage which dog breeds make up the most of your dog and which breeds are secondary in the dog’s genetic makeup, meaning forming less than 50%. Unfortunately, these breed verification tests only cover a certain percentage of the total number of dog breeds known and because not all dog breeds are covered, the test is not entirely accurate.
The accuracy of the test depends on the company. These tests to determine the heritage of your mutt are dependent on how complete the genetic database used by the DNA testing company is. The more information they have about different breeds, the more accurate the results.
Karl M McDonald is a specialist writer, namely writing about genetics and DNA testing. The author does however, delve into a diversity of other topics including pregnancy, parenting and schooling.