Best Dog DNA Test Kit – Our 2018 Reviews & Top Picks
Raising a dog without knowing it's exact genetic breed can be tricky.
Why do we say that?
Simply put, different dog breeds have different genetic traits that make them more prone to certain diseases.
Knowing these genetic traits in advance would allow you to make dietary and environmental precautions so that your dog can lead a healthy life.
That's where a dog DNA test kit can come in handy.
Apart from the questions that flood your mind regarding your dog's breed, there are health concerns, inclination of your dog towards certain patterns of illnesses and behavioral issues as well its predisposition to genetic diseases. These can be revealed with the help of basic DNA dog test kits.
This is exactly why we have reviewed the best dog DNA test kits in the market and provided a comprehensive buyer's guide for you.
How Does DNA Testing of Dogs Actually Work?
It's really easy! You have to purchase a DIY dog DNA test kit first.
These dog DNA test kits are really simple to use. All you need to do is swab your dog's cheek and mail it back in a postage-paid box.
In a few weeks' time, you would receive a report of your dog's complete DNA results. The DNA report would contain important information such as ancestral breed breakdown percentages of your dog and risks for developing genetic health diseases.
In some cases, a behavior and personality summary are also provided
Comparison Table of Dog DNA Test Kits
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Reviewing dog DNA kits could be tricky; firstly, because they are not just another canine product that you can review with normal industry standards and secondly because they need months of research on the basis of customer reviews.
This is why it took us quite some time to identify which DNA test kit is the best out there.
The Mars Veterinary Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit is our top pick and comes highly recommended.
Finding out your dog's DNA could never be easier than this. What's more, your dog's genetic background will be revealed in as less than 3 weeks.
What we really love about the Mars Veterinary Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit is the speed of the DNA report. Your dog's genetic background will be revealed in as less than 3 weeks!
- Table of Contents
- Comparison Table
- Our Top Pick
- At A Glance
- #1: Mars Veterinary Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit
- #2: Embark Dog DNA Test Kit
- #3: DNAffirm Dog DNA Canine Identification Test Kit
- #4: DNA My Dog Canine Breed Identification Test Kit
- How We Reviewed
- Dog DNA Test Kit Buyer's Guide: Choosing the Best
- Final Thoughts – DNA Testing Helps To Get To Know Your Dog Better
The Mars Veterinary Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit is simply the best there is in the market right now.
Why do we say so?
Among the 4 different test kits, it has the largest database of breeds that you can detect (up to 250 breeds).
The best feature of this test kit is the fact that you can literally trace your dog's genealogy to its great-grandparents. Almost over 250 breeds have been detected with the help of this kit and most of them are recognized by the AKC (American Kennel Club). So whether you have a purebred, a mixed breed or a designer breed; you can get the tests done at your disposal.
These tests include a number of things, among which an average weight profile and a check for multi-drug resistance 1genetic mutation (MDR1) are included. This kind of resistance could cause your dog to react severely to a few drugs that are commonly prescribed.
To add to these features, tests of purebred and designer dogs with this kit will assist you with a chart that you can use to compare your dog with other dogs of the same breed. When it comes to purebred tests, this kit adds yet another feature called the Homozygosity Profile that helps measure genetic markers.
We recommend this because of its accuracy. It has been tried and tested by AKC for over 250 breeds and there are 1000 reviews on Amazon already, out of which 80% of the users have highly recommended it.
- The kit detects more than 250 breeds of dogs and these include 99% of breeds recognized by AKC.
- It traces back to three generations while revealing your pet's genealogy.
- Assists you with a prediction of weight in adulthood to help you inculcate the right nutritional choices early in life.
- Features MDR1 genetic mutation test that checks for multi-drug resistance that is known to cause adverse reactions to medicines that are commonly prescribed.
- You will not have to go through an elaborate blood testing procedure at the vet because with a simple swab of your dog, you can identify your dog's ancestry.
- For rescue dogs, this is the best form of recognition because it will help to find out your dog's training needs, expected behavioral patterns, health needs and expected appearance.
- If you plan to customize your test, the reports can indicate the lineage back to your dog's great grandparents. This will help you to find out whether your dog is a mixed breed, designer breed or a purebred.
- Speed of test results (within 2 to 3 weeks usually).
- User friendliness of the test kit.
- The test helps to predict weight and nutritional choices.
- Not exactly the cheapest option.
- Only two chances to test your dog's DNA.
While deciding upon our Top Pick, there was a tough contender that fought along on all the lines of comparison but lost out on grounds of affordability.
Simply put, if the Embark Dog DNA Test Kit was cheaper, we would have recommended it as out Top Pick.
There was no denying the Embark Dog DNA Test Kit the second position. When you need cutting edge technology to study your dog's breed, health and ancestry more intricately than any other kit, this is what you need.
As compared to its competitors, the Embark Dog DNA test kit tests for up to 160 genetic health conditions (including MDR1,PRA blindness and exercise-induced collapse (EIC). It is also the most accurate Dog DNA test kit, as it tests for 50X more genetic markers than competitors.
The best part of this kit is its all-in-one approach of providing glimpses of your dog's ancestry and the potential health risks associated with it. What makes it stand apart from other kits is the fact that it does not stop at tracing back your dog's ancestral line but aims at an overall improvement of your dog's entire life span.
We recommend this we really liked the company's customer service, its dedication to helping pets charitability and the ease of using its Dog DNA test kit.
- You will get free updates for life. You can trust Embark to provide you with new test results for free whenever they come across a canine genetic association that they haven't dealt with before. This association will be added to your panel and will be tested for free.
- Embark provides you reports with everything detailed and mapped out for the benefit of your vet and for yourself. Once you have these detailed reports in hand, your conversations with your vet regarding your canine's health will become more convenient.
- The method of collecting DNA samples is very easy and involves a simple cheek swab collection.
- When you can have 160 varieties of genetic tests done on your canines, a whole range of potential diseases come to the forefront. The most dreaded Multi-Drug Sensitivity that occurs because of the MRD1 gene is identified as well among other things.
- The fact that Embark uses more than 200,000 genetic markers to study your dog's genetic ancestry takes it to the top of the list effortlessly.
- Embark hires the best Dog DNA scientists to evaluate your pet's genealogy, which is evidence enough to be trusted.
- You can find out the full expected size and weight of your puppy with this dog kit as well as the expected weight of your adult dog. The second comes in handy to evaluate whether your dog has a healthy weight or not.
- If you have adopted your dog without knowing his/her age, trust Embark to be able to find out your dog's genetic age. This helps in making the right food choices and age-appropriate exercises.
- The DNA test results are delivered via an interactive and convenient app.
- Positive customer feedback regarding the accuracy of the brand.
- Delivers more DNA data than most of its competitors.
- Highest amount of genetic markers used that makes it more accurate than its counterparts.
- Affordability. It was the most the most expensive option among the various dog DNA test kits.
- The time required for the report was the longest as well (6-8 weeks)
When you need to identify prevalent breeds in your dog's DNA, the DNAffirm Dog DNA Canine Identification Test Kit is what you need.
A study of prevalent breeds will help you with a better and more comprehensive understanding of your dog's behavioral traits, the health risks that your dog is prone to and the type of personality your dog is likely to develop.
In recent times, we have noticed an upsurge in identifying the ancestral line of dogs with the help of dog DNA test kits. This is primarily because more people are catching up on the idea of providing their furry friends with the best of life choices. Revealing the DNA helps you as well as your dog to adapt to each other's expectations and also to choose the best option every time.
The DNA is not only responsible for differences in appearance but for a number of other things like behavioral characteristics etc. This is exactly what the DNAffirm canine identification test kit does. The DNA that is required to perform this test can only be identified with a simple swab test. The cells trapped in the swab carry the genetic material and help perform the test.
We recommend this because genetic revelation is not just about finding out the predictable weight and size of your dog but also about identifying behavioral patterns and tendencies that this test kit brilliantly does.
- It is a simple test that includes taking your dog's DNA sample via a cheek swab that is the easiest way ever.
- The test results provide you with a customized photo certificate of your dog's unique breed composition.
- The reports also include your dog's dominant breeds, its personality traits and potential health concerns.
- This test will help you identify and confirm the breeds present in your dog that will further allow you to be more cautious about your dog's health and well-being.
- The results of the test are available as early as 2 weeks from the time the sample is received.
- The results of this test kit has been used a number of times in court cases to show the characteristics of certain breeds of dogs that helps to keep misguided judgments at bay.
- You will now know your dog's habits more accurately and will be able to react in certain ways that will be beneficial for yourself as well as for your dog.
- Finding out your dog's breed composition will also allow you to set up an activity/exercise regime for your dog more easily because you will know exactly what to expect.
- You will have more access to information on illnesses and diseases that your dogmight be prone to.
- Identifies personality traits and common health concerns.
- This test kit carries legal backup since the results have been used in court cases successfully.
- It's accuracy. Some pet owners have complaints about the inaccuracy of the test results.
- Reports could be more detailed.
Well, the DNA My Dog Canine Breed Identification Test Kit is the cheapest dog DNA test kit in the market right now.
With only 87 dog breeds in its database, you might not get accurate results as compared to the 1st 3 options.
It comes promised a "claimed accuracy rate" of 99.7%, this DNA kit is a lot more than what an average kit can claim to do. (Although some customers have reported varying degrees of accuracy).
You are simply needed to swab the cheeks of your dog and collect its DNA sample. The test is simple, pain-free and takes less than a minute to complete. After receiving your samples, they are run through the database of this test kit to find out the perfect match. The final step is to send you the percentage of breeds that have been found in your dog.
Apart from that, it comes with the fairly standard result pack.
You are provided with a custom certificate along with a photo of your dog that clearly states its DNA composition. Every dog has a unique DNA composition. The brand manufacturers ensure that the kind of certificate they provide is perfect for framing. They also promise to deliver the results in around 2 weeks.
We recommend this test kit only because of its price. If you are on a tight budget, do be sure to consider this option. If not, you would be better off with the 1st 3 options.
- You receive a personalized analysis of the breeds found in your dog from their database of the most commonly found breeds.
- The personalized result will also list out your dog's unique personality traits and the health related concerns that your dog is genetically inclined to have.
- This information along with everything else makes training and caring for your dog quite convenient.
- The information about the diseases that your dog is genetically predisposed to have will ensure that you are always pro-active about your dog's well-being.
- The results will include a customized photo certificate of the breeds that have been found in your dog's breed composition.
- A breakdown of the levels found in the unique DNA of your dog in the form of percentages.
- The reports will also include the dominant breeds of your dog, its personality traits and the health concerns that you should look into.
- The results come in as early as 2 weeks.
- It is a fast, effective, secure and absolutely painless way of getting your dog's DNA tested.
- Least expensive Dog DNA test kit we came across.
- Some customers have mentioned in their reviews that this brand only determines four levels of breeds instead of the percentages that it claims to.
- There are only 84 breeds in their database.
- Genetic mutation testing for health conditions is not provided.
- Customer complaints about delayed results.
Finding out the breed of your dog is important but how will you know if the results that we are providing are accurate or not? Why would you trust us? We understand that a dog DNA kit is not something that you come across every day, which is why you need evidence to trust reviews.
While reviewing and coming up with this article, we ensured that the information we provide is reliably sourced.
We spoke to veterinarians, dog owners, breeders and health care facilities that provide these services. They helped us understand how the entire process works. They specified the advantages and disadvantages of the top brands in the market that helped us to finalize our top pick and choice picks.
With all the pieces of information brought together, we can ensure you an article that will benefit you in every way possible.
Getting your dog's DNA tested is important. There are some significant reasons to get it done early in life. This benefits both the owner as well as your canine companion. If you have adopted a dog recently, it is possible that you are unaware of the breed while adopting it.
It could be quite overwhelming for you to find out the breed later and in a lot of cases, such dogs are sent back to the pound because the owner is not sure about being able to raise it responsibly.
To avoid such unfortunate situations later, a DNA test is a sure shot way of getting to know your dog better.
Main Reasons To Test Your Dog's DNA
Apart from the fact that a dog DNA test can help benefit the dog and the owner with mental, emotional and health-related concerns, there are two main reasons to get your dog's DNA tested today.
Weight And Size
These two factors are the primary reasons for which you should get your dog's DNA tested. Weight predictions are important because they are directly linked to your dog's food choices and health in future. Finding out your dog's DNA will help you to identify the breed it belongs to. You will also get a fair idea of what his/her weight is likely to be, which will further assist you in planning the diet.
A lot of dogs end up becoming obese and unhealthy because the owners are not aware of what the size and weight could be when they grow up. They end up making wrong food choices and this goes on to make them unfit and unhealthy and ridden with diseases.
The weight and size predictions are also important while making activity choices for your dog. You can choose to include different levels of activities and exercise patterns that suit your dog's weight and size predictions. It is quite difficult to understand how big or heavy your dog could grow up to be while he/she is a puppy so a foolproof way of knowing it is to get his/her DNA tested with a test kit at home.
What Else Does A DNA Test Reveal?
Apart from the main factors like the weight and size, a dog DNA test also reveals the following things:
Whether your dog will grow up to be an introvert or more of an extrovert can also be predicted by a DNA test. This is because personality tests are well identified and traced back to ancestry with the help of this test. Your dog might be an expert digger or a loud barker and it is incredible to be able to get an inkling of these behavior traits early in life.
Your dog might belong to a breed that is prone to certain kinds of illnesses. Getting to know the breed is convenient since you can keep yourself well prepared to prevent these illnesses as far as possible or opt for the best courses of treatment if they were to happen.
If you have a purebred dog, it becomes even more important to get a DNA test done to understand the ancestral line. With the help of DNA identifier tests, you can effectively prevent inbreeding.
How Do Dog DNA Tests Work?
Since this is a relatively new field, dog DNA test kits are still apprehended by many. This is because they feel that the process is complicated and the results might not be accurate. However, you will be happy to know that a DNA test kit is easy to use and the results are highly accurate.
There are three steps to be followed while testing your dog's DNA. These steps are:
Step 1: Collection Of Dog DNA
The primary step is to collect your dog's DNA and it is way simpler than you thought it was. You will simply need to insert a cotton swab into the mouth of your dog and rub the swab on the inside of its cheek to collect a DNA sample.
Step 2: Mailing Of Cotton Swab Back
Most of the kits that you use will have a self-addressed package that can be sent back along with the sample to the lab. You must follow the instructions carefully and label the samples accordingly.
Step 3: Receive DNA Report
In around 2-8 weeks, you will have your dog's genetic report. The reports will consist of information about the ancestry of your dog that can help prepare a training program based on the breed history of your dog.
Are Dog DNA Tests Accurate?
A lot of people worry about the accuracy of a Dog DNA test kit but there is no denying the fact that these kits are committed to providing accurate results. However, these results do depend on a number of things that are listed below:
While collecting a dog's DNA sample sounds quite convenient, it could affect the accuracy of the results in a number of ways. If the quality of the sample cannot be guaranteed then there is nothing that a DNA test could possibly do for it to be perfect.
The accuracy depends on the owner and the way in which he follows the instructions listed out in the DNA kit.
The places of variation within a dog's genetic structure are termed as genetic markers. When researchers study the similarities and differences between these genetic markers, they can identify your dog's unique characteristics. Ideally, the test kits that have more genetic markers are better at identification than the kits with fewer genetic markers.
The lab where the DNA is being tested needs to have a wider DNA database for the best possible results. The more the number of breeds; the better will be the accuracy of the test results.
If all these factors can be managed simultaneously, then it is needless to say that the DNA test results will be absolutely accurate.
There is no denying the fact that getting to identify your dog's breed mix can actually help you and your vet come up with a more effective and more nurturing health plan for your dog.
Genetic mutation testing is a quintessential aspect of DNA identification because it opens up several avenues through which you can identify your dog's genetic disposition to potential illnesses.
This helps you to take precautionary measures, read early warning signs and act before it is too late.
To sum it all up, a Dog DNA test kit can simplify your life with a dog in more ways than one and it is more of a necessity than a luxury. Adopting a dog is a wonderful idea but it is equally important to be able to care for your dog efficiently.
Knowing your dog's health concerns, ideal body weight and size, personality traits and behavioral patterns will always help you to have an upper hand in matters of pet care.