Dog DNA Tests: The Surprising Results
Dog DNA tests can be a fun way to peek into your dog's history and get some insight into what mix of breeds led to the birth of your beloved friend. What's especially fun about these tests is that sometimes the results are very surprising. You might have always assumed that your mixed-breed pup descended mostly from one specific breed, only to find out that her heritage is very different.
Why can these results be surprising? It's easy for pet parents to misjudge what breed their dog looks like. This is because mixing certain breeds together can actually result in a dog that looks like a very different breed. Typically, the results — even the surprising ones — are accurate, whether it's from a cheek-swab method (which tests for fewer breeds), or a blood test at the vet.
From Terrier to Chihuahua
Uschi Gerschner always figured her pup, Bodhi, was a Terrier mix. In fact, the rescue she adopted him from had him listed as Terrier/Dachshund mix.
"He has the Terrier face and he loves to hunt, dig, chase and is obsessed with squirrels, so there was no question for me that he must be part terrier," she says. "Bodhi has a very long body though, so I was always wondering if he was part Dachshund or maybe Corgi, since he has the fluffy Corgi butt."
She was really surprised when her DNA test showed that Bodhi is 50 percent Chihuahua, 25 percent Shih Tzu, and 25 percent Miniature Poodle.
"The Chihuahua was surprising to me, since he does not show any of the personality traits. He's super laid-back and loves all people, including kids, and all dogs – even my cat," she says. "He's 20 pounds, so bigger than any of those breeds too!"
No matter what breed he is, Bodhi means the world to Uschi. She says she gets stopped a lot when she walks him because he's just so adorable.
Doggie DNA Tests Can't Be Tricked
Leslie Keller tried the test on her dog, Charlie. She did them just for fun, and was surprised to learn that her dog — who she thought was a lab — had a lot of Shar-Pei along with other breeds, and even some poodle in the mix! She thought the poodle that showed up in Charlie's profile was especially funny, since he's 2 foot 2 inches tall and weights in the mid 90s.
"I love all dogs equally, so I don't actually care about his breed," Leslie says. "We call him Charlie the Poodle because of the DNA test, but mostly because he's very dramatic."
In fact, she didn't believe the DNA test at first, so she sent Charlie's sample to the same company, twice. And the company wasn't fooled. The letter that came with the second test read: "Our analysis of the DNA extracted from the provided sample indicates that we have tested the DNA from this dog before ..."
"Yes, I sent a second sample to the same company just to see what would happen," she acknowledges. "Shame on me!"
Leslie adds that she always felt that Charlie was a bit of a mish-mash of breeds, with the heart of a true, beloved family member. "Charlie is many, many generations of street dog. Put all the pieces together and you have the heart and soul of our family. I love him more than oxygen!"
Remember that if you get a DNA test for your pup, it's mostly just for fun, although it can give you some insight into personality and preferences. Medically speaking, your mixed-breed dog has likely been genetically diluted to the point that purebred diseases aren't much of a worry.
If you've been thinking about getting a DNA test for your dog, why wait any longer? Go ahead and find out if your Golden Retriever lookalike or your Basset Hound clone is really what you think. Then celebrate the results by taking lots of photos and sharing the fun news online. Don't forget to also share some celebratory Milk-Bone® Farmer's Medley™ biscuits, so your pup will be in on the fun.
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