DNA My Dog DNA Testing Kit Review
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The only way this thought might have crossed your mind before is most likely because you rescued a dog. Congratulations! It's the right thing to do with an estimated 3 million dogs in shelters each year. Now you’re curious as to what this cute little monster has in its genetic history and are pondering how you could find out. There is an answer to your question; DNA testing.
Maybe you have doubts about your purebred because the attributes don't match up, or worse, medical concerns? Certain breeds are better compatible with children, others better for protection, and some dogs have known medical issues that can be treated if found early.
Either way, if you need ancestors' questions answered, there's help out there. Tons of websites provide dog DNA testing, some are more expensive than others, but they all promise to give you a better understanding of your dogs' traits and medical alerts with high accuracy. DNA My Dog has 96 breeds in their database, so unless your dog is mixed with too many others, they can give you an accurate picture.
First, ask yourself what the ultimate goal is. Prices on DNAmydog.com include free shipping and come in at $68.99. Once they receive your completed test, the processing and results will be completed within two weeks, so you won’t have to wait long for the answers.
Pros and Cons
- Two swabs provided and replaceable if you have any mishaps
- DNA My Dog donates money to dog charities in the US and Canada
- One of the least expensive options
- Fast turnaround time of two-weeks and free shipping
- Customer service team available for any questions or support required
- Science is evolving; the results aren’t 100% accurate in some cases
- One of the smallest databases for dog breeds
- Customer complaints about accuracy and turnaround time
Collecting Your DNA Sample
That is the tricky part. The first step is easy. All you need to do is register online with DNA My Dog and request the kit. The kit will then be mailed out to you and usually only takes two days to arrive at your chosen delivery address.
Once you have it, read the instructions carefully. You need to get the provided cotton swab or brush into your dogs' mouth and rub it for up to 20 seconds. Good luck with that! Also, note that it’s best done after eating with zero food residue, though.
After a short drying period, place the swab into the included designated container and mail it back. The envelope is provided, and with DNA My Dog, the postage is included.
It's definitely worth researching before you buy to make sure that DNA My Dog’s service matches your needs. You may need to carry a certificate with you, which proves that your dog is not a Pit Bull, so make sure a hard copy is included. Be aware that there are no legal regulations or even standards in the industry.
How Fast Do Results Come Back?
Fully identifying your dogs’ DNA markers and analyzing the data takes up a lot of time. A dog's DNA panel equals 2.8 billion letters, whereas humans have 3.3. Between two and three hundred different dog breeds exist. DNA My Dog promises to return your results with you within two weeks of them arriving at the processing center.
Your dogs' cotton swab is processed by a technician and ran against the database. It detects cross overs in the 29 chromosomes dogs have; that's why the results come back in percent. A dog has the potential to be 43% American Bulldog, 27% American Pitbull, and 11% German Shepherd, with the remaining percentage grouped by overall breed.
What do The Results Include?
A report from DNA My Dog will cover:
- A Customized Breed Composition Certificate
- Personality Traits
- Genetic Health Risks and Predispositions
The breed composition certificate will tell you the different types of dogs in the genetic make-up of your fur baby. DNA My Dog provides you with their own customized certificate, which is easy to interpret. The personality traits will answer your questions about your dog’s behavior; it could explain one or two things you always wondered about your pet and its antics! The Health risk report is super valuable and could help you to prolong your pet’s life as well as giving you guidance on the health issues to look out for throughout its life.
How Does DNA My Dog Your Privacy?
The data is stored in large, secure servers with all of the latest security features required and expected for a company of this size. In addition to your report, you will have a dedicated online account that only you can access. DNA My Dog takes personal data very seriously, and although your dog’s results will be added to their database, there is no way this information could be used to identify you.
So you can rest easy when thinking about the data security implications. If you have any concerns about this, you can ask their dedicated customer service team for guidance and reassurance.
Matching with Relatives
That’s the fun part.
If you decide to go ahead with it, it's essential to know a few things beforehand. Do you have a breed in mind when it comes to your dog? Is it most likely an American breed or possibly European? This is crucial as most providers proud themselves with an extensive database to check against. If those records are mostly domestic, they may not find the English Cocker Spaniel in your Labrador mix.
The same goes if your dog was brought into the United States or contains particularly rare breeds. It’s essential to have a rough idea already of what might be in your dog’s genetics. If your pooch is heavily mixed with multiple other breeds from a different geographical location, you may not learn as much about it by doing this test.
DNA My Dog’s Prices and Details
Well, there is no money-back guarantee. The price of $68.99 is fantastic value for a service of this kind and includes postage costs. It’s market-leading when it comes to value.
You have relatively advanced science against your guts and knowledge. Here are the details the pack includes:
- Results available in two weeks
- Photo certificate of the breeds found in your dog
- Percentage breakdown of DNA levels discovered
- Report that includes dominant breeds
This test is perfect for those who want to understand their furry friend in more detail. It tells you everything you need to know about their genetic makeup, breeds, history, and potential traits. It’s one for the dog lovers who need to know everything about their pets.
Remember all the good things about your dog and refrain from believing common misconceptions such as Pitbulls are dangerous, or Great Danes most likely will have to go through expensive hip surgery in their life. Who knows, maybe you ended up with a costly Rhodesian Ridgeback mix. Ego boost alert!
If you owned a Boxer heavily mixed with a Bulldog, you could have him checked for sinus issues. Or a Retriever mixed with a Labrador is an automated flag for hip dysplasia. It gives you as the owner the chance to adjust their food and exercise regime. There could be a reason why your Beagle is acting up if they have some Terrier in them as they need way more entertainment than initially thought.
Don't make up things in your mind when you get the test results back. As a good dog owner, you know firsthand if your dog has an issue. It doesn't hurt the relationship with your pet if you could find answers about your dogs' behavior.
If you get along with your dog on an almost human to human level and are not concerned about his heritage health issue, keep your money. Also, keep in mind that if your dog is made up of too many breeds, the test may come back with little to no precise results.
DNA testing for dogs is not crucial but can reveal interesting facts about your dog and its behavior. If you have reason to worry about a particular trait of your dog, get the test done with DNA My Dog. After all, you want to know as much as possible to take good care of your pet. Regular vet visits should undoubtedly take precedence over DNA testing. So should staying up to date with vaccines, flea and heartworm medication, registration, and most importantly, plenty of love.
Consider how much you do believe in science. Would you do DNA testing for yourself? For family history or a disease scan? If the answer is yes, you might as well do it for the whole family.
If the test comes back with a negative result in your opinion, then what do you do? Are you prepared to handle it? Many factors come into play. How long have you owned this dog? Are you getting along fine? Is the dogs' personality what you expected despite the breed not being pure?
Consider your options. Do you want to give up your pet? Is the breeder going to take him back? Does he have to go to a shelter with an uncertain destiny?
If you love your dog, you shouldn't be considering any of that based on science that is continually evolving. For your dog, you are his ultimate family, and you wouldn't throw out your highly annoying teenager, would you?
If the results are surprising, you can report the breeder to numerous associations and help prevent dog breeding fraud. Don't ever give up your dog just because he might not be purebred even if you paid thousands of dollars. Make your dog the priority, not your money.