Thursday, April 28, 2011

Mixed Breed Dog Genetic Testing - Should DNA Tests be Done For Mixed Breeds?

Well friends, I have been into hibernation for quite some times. My internet system was out of order... means I was without blood the past few days. I got to check out my emails just yesterday and found waves out there in my mail box. Some of them are from the readers of Welcome Dog Lovers blog. One of the most important questions shot off to me through an email that I have chosen to discuss about in this post is from Angela, who asked me if she should have DNA Tests done for her "cuttie little mutt - SAM". Let me introduce SAM, in brief, as per Angela's mail. SAM is a 3 months old GSD-Lab mixed (Male), which she adopted from a local animal shelter.

Thank you Angela, for your thoughtful question, trying to answering which made me write this posts. I am sure this little piece of info will come to a great help to many people around us.

It is really quite appreciable that you have saved one life by adopting a puppy from local animal shelter. Congratulations for the new add to your family! If you are not sure about the genetic lineage of your mixed breed dog, DNA test is a way you can know if your cuttie pie has a GSD with lab or boxer with Golden Retriever in his/her blood! Many enthusiasts of Mixed breed dogs now-a-days seem to be a bit inclined towards DNA testing, trying to determine their dogs' genetic heritage.

It is always advisable to go for a proper DNA test for mixed breed dogs. DNA test for mixed breed dogs is highly recommended and its importance goes beyond just knowing the genetic heritage of your dog. It is all about determining the specific health issues that your mixed breed dog may prone to, because he or she has more than one breed. You you can determine the heritage or ancestry of dog breeds for your puppy, it will be easier for you determine which health issues your mixed breed puppy may prone to. So now you can take essential measures to ensure that your dogs gets a happy and healthy life. It's all about responsible dog ownership!

Let's delve deeper into this. Apart from determining the health issues that your mixed breed puppy may prone to in future, the DNA tests explain a series of instinctual behavior of your dog. Remember GSD mixed with Labrador will exhibit entire different behavioral instinct for GSD mixed with Rottweiler. Some behavioral traits are typically specific to the breed. For instance a Jack Russel Terrier mixed with a Cocker Spaniel may exhibit digging behavior, a Cocker Spaniel mixed with American Springer Spaniel may show a jumping tendencies. Knowing beforehand what kind of behavior your mixed breed puppy may show up in future is of quite importance. This will help you in formulating the perfect training and exercise types and schedules. This is again all about responsible dog ownership!

There are three dog DNA tests that can be done. Two of them includes collecting the swab samples form the cheek, which are to be sent to the laboratories. The other one involves testing blood based DNA samples. The heavily complex genetic science is not easily understandable to general mass. So what can we expect from the dog DNA testing reports? Can we really rely 100% on the DNA test reports for our dogs? Answers to the first question can be found above; you can expect an outline of your dog's behavioral and health issues that are genetically engineered in your dog's blood through cross breeding. A German Shepherd - Doberman mixed dog may exhibit certain behaviors, which are deviations from the standard behavioral instincts of these two pure breed dogs. Chances are also there that certain specific behavior(s) may be exhibited in the mixed breed puppies that are typical to one of the breed, provided that particular breed in predominant in your puppy. But things don't always happen based on formula like this.

On the other hand, if the cross breed puppies have history of cross breeding in the past series of generations, you cannot really bank fully on the DNA test reports of your mixed breed puppies. With history of many numbers of cross breeding in the past generations the result of your dog DNA test may end up with doubts or disputes. Still such reports can give you a general outline (if not 100% perfect) about the behavior and health issues. Responsible dog ownership always demands dog DNA tests for mixed breed dogs.

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