DNA profiling has become increasingly popular in the last few years. People are dying to know about their ancestry and what makes them unique. But did you know you can also do a dog DNA test for your four-legged friend?
Like many dog owners, we rescued ours from a shelter. And when you get a dog from the pound/shelter there’s very little information that you get about them or their background. Usually, this is because they just don’t have that available since most are strays or abandoned.
When we brought our rescue baby home, we were sure she was a Staffie. She looked like a Staffie, but she was definitely a cross and we assumed due to her energy, colouring and longer coat that she was likely bred with a Collie.
Even though we were pretty sure we knew ‘what’ she was – when my husband mentioned to me that you can get a DNA test for your dog, I knew I wanted to give it a try! I don’t really care what she is, but I thought the results would be interesting to know. My husband even said he’d bet a month’s wages that she was Staffie he was so certain.
After a little searching, I came across Via-Pet and they do dog DNA breed testing for £34. Not the arm and a leg I was expecting so I jumped at the opportunity to purchase a kit. The process was a quick registration, doing a swab on her cheek, popping it into an envelope and sending it off. The results took around 2 weeks to come back, but it was well worth the wait.
Colour Me Surprised
Not only was she not a Collie, but she wasn’t even a Staffordshire Bull Terrier!
It was a pretty detailed report that consisted of 5 levels to determine her ancestry. It comes with a family tree to breakdown the breeds and a breakdown of the results via ‘Levels’ to explain her genetics.
Level 1 – this is if they are purebred/pedigree and would show up here as having two parents of the same breed.
Level 2 – crossbreed parents, one of which is likely pedigree
Level 3 – usually if they have 20-30% of the listed breeds, generally from Mongrel parents and grandparents
Level 4 – shows 10-20% of their breed DNA, usually from great grandparents
Level 5 – the lowest level of breed in your dog from many generations before, occurring at 5% or less, but still traceable.
Level 1 – She didn’t have a level 1 reading as she’s not a purebred. But we already knew that.
Level 2 – Basenji and Boston Terrier.
Level 3 – Millie didn’t have a level 3 reading as most of her genetics was found to be from the Basenji x Boston Terrier.
Level 4 – Boxer and Fiest.
Level 5– American Staffordshire Bull Terrier and Jack Russell Terrier
So there it was in black and white. She is a Basenji x Boston Terrier. Never in a million years would I have said she was either of those! The results completely floored me, but it was definitely worth doing to appease my curious nature.
Of course, it didn’t really matter what she was because to me she was everything regardless. But I do feel like I’ve had an imposter in the house, I was just convinced she was a Staffie, as did everyone else!
I’m really glad I went ahead and had her profile done, it was really interesting and also came with a list of possible hereditary illnesses that could present themselves know we know what breed she actually is.
If you have a rescue yourself I would definitely recommend having a dog DNA profile done – it was really fun to learn and a total eye-opener! You might be more shocked at the results that I was.
Until next time ♡