Three Things to Consider Before Buying a DNA Test for Dogs

Knowing specific biological information about your pet can help you plan its long-term care.

Dog running happy in field
Dog DNA tests reveal variations in a pet’s bloodlines and whether it’s susceptible to any health issue.Joe Caione

A lot of folks love their dogs like family and treat them like family. So it’s no surprise there’s a growing interest in learning all about a dog’s family lines. DNA breed tests (sometimes called wisdom panels). Using biological information contained on a simple cheek swab from the inside of your dog’s mouth, a laboratory can provide details like whether your pet is 100 percent purebred, or if it has a mix somewhere in its family tree. Results can also show you more about your dog’s genetic makeup, or if it might have a predisposition for genetic health conditions so that you and your veterinarian can make the right decisions about its health. Here are three things to consider when choosing a DNA breed test for your dog.

Wisdom Panel 3.0 Canine DNA Test - Dog DNA Test Kit for Breed and Ancestry Information
This product compares more than 350 canine strains and variations.Wisdom Health

Before you buy a test kit, learn how many breeds are in the manufacturer’s database. The more breeds a lab can compare your pooch’s DNA against, the more detailed the results will be.

Embark | Dog DNA Test | Breed & Health Kit | Breed Identification & Canine Genetic Health Screening
This wisdom panel determines if your pet is prone to more than 175 diseases.Embark

Some DNA kits also screen for potential health issues, drug sensitivities, hereditary cataracts, and even kidney stones. These kits are often moderately more expensive than breed-only DNA testing kits but can provide insight into possible preventative treatments before your pet becomes ill.

Embark | Dog DNA Test | Breed Identification Kit
This pack can detect contributions from other lineages that are as small as five percent of the dog’s total genetic makeup.Embark

It’s exciting to think your prized pooch might have royal blood flowing through its veins, but you’ll have to be a little patient once you’ve completed the test. Most manufacturers advertise it takes between one and three weeks before you’ll receive test results.