Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Learn Your Dog’s Breed through HSSV’s DNA Testing Service!

By Marie Matheson, HSSV Volunteer

Nearly every time I am out and about with my two rescue dogs, I get asked, "What kind of dogs are those?” The HSSV staff was asking the same question when they rescued Munchie and his littermates. (Remember Munchie, the puppy in foster?) Well, Dr. Julia Lewis, director of medical services at HSSV, decided to DNA test Munchie because with just one test, she could get information on all seven of Munchie’s littermates, too!

HSSV’s DNA testing is easy on the animal and is done by taking a blood sample. DNA testing is useful because “adopters and owners can provide training and socialization appropriate to the breed makeup,” says Dr. Julia. “It can also reveal information about the possibility of diseases that may be related to particular breeds,” she adds. And of course, in the case of my own two dogs, it would certainly satisfy my curiosity regarding their breed makeup.

The most common guesses on Munchie’s breed included Labrador Retriever, Newfoundland and Chow-Chow, but the DNA testing determined Munchie and his litter mates are Rottweiler, German Shepherd and Miniature Long Haired Dachshund. And shortly after the mystery of Munchie’s genes was solved, the adoption staff at HSSV found a loving family to adopt him!

Now that I know more about DNA testing, I decided to have the tests done on my own dogs (see photos). Feel free to post your guess on their breeds in the comments section of the blog. Stay tuned for their results!

If you would like to do a DNA test on your dog, click here.