Today’s guest writer is Stacy Mantle. She is writing what do know about Dog DNA.

While I love purebred canines, mutts happen to be my most favorite “breed” of dog.  Since I gravitate toward mutts, I also love to figure out which breeds make up their unique personalities and physical looks. This is where the DNA testing for dogs comes into play.

DNA testing provides more than just your dog’s genetic makeup of breeds. These tests provide information about your dog’s health; one of the most important of which is the MDR1 screening.  

Multi-Drug Resistance-1 (MDR1) is a genetic mutation found in many of the herding breeds, some sighthound breeds, and many mixed-breed dogs. If your dog has the MDR1 mutation, he will be VERY sensitive to drugs. In fact, he could easily overdose on “standard” dosages and he will not be able to rid his body of a drug’s metabolites as easily as other dogs who don’t have a mutation.

Dog DNA: Who’s Your Dog’s Daddy?

We have discovered many interesting things about our dogs by doing DNA testing. Our dog, Cheiss, was one of the more interesting cases. We learned that he had the MDR1 gene, which is likely why he was so intolerant of medications.

We also learned he was part Chow-Chow, Shar Pei, and Keeshond. Each of these breeds comes with some possible health conditions (like Shar Pei Fever) and tendency towards dysplasia. They each have some potential personality quirks; such as “guarding” behavior from the Keeshond or the Chow-Chow’s intolerance for bad behavior. DNA testing really helped us develop an effective training program and modify his diet to be more effective, while giving us valuable clues in what we should watch for in regards to his health.

Here are some good DNA test companies to check out:

Embark Tests for 250 breeds Genetic mutation testing for over 160 canine health conditions $149
Wisdom Panel Tests for 180 breeds Genetic mutation testing for over 150 canine health conditions $94.95 – $149.99
HomeDNA Tests for 235 breeds 235+ recognized and developing breeds in their database $125

While test results and accuracy may vary slightly between companies, DNA testing can give you valuable insight into your mutt’s predominant breeds, which can help you treat health conditions, identify training styles that may work better, and help you develop a closer relationship with your dog.  If that’s not worth $100, I’m not sure what is.

What do you do to enrich your dog’s environment when he is home alone? Have you tried DOGTV? Sign up for a  free fourteen day trial of DOGTV to help enrich your dog’s environment to alleviate his stress and separation anxiety.

Hey Shelter and Rescue Operators and Organizations, ask us how playing DOGTV in your facility will help to calm dogs and alleviate their stress while they’re waiting for their forever homes. Also, grab your free fourteen day trial of DOGTV to play at the shelter.