DNA testing has become so affordable that everyone’s doing it. And now, people are even more interested in dog DNA testing! But are those owners totally crazy or is there actually a reason to get your dog’s DNA tested? Learn 4 reasons dog owners are doing it and decide for yourself.
#1 Find Out Exactly What Your Mutt Is Made Of With Dog DNA Testing
Just as a human DNA test, a dog DNA test can tell you about your canine’s ancestry. For example, you’ll be able to learn exactly which breeds your dog came from. If you have a mutt, a dog breed test can help you understand exactly what mixture of genetics is in there.
Knowing the different breeds that make up your mutt is extremely useful. It can give you an idea of what kind of personality and temperament they will have. If you discover there’s a lot of hidden terrier DNA, you can prepare for a highly energetic pup.
#2 Use Dog DNA Testing to Identify Health Risks from the Get-Go
As you might already know, different breeds come with different health risks. If your dog is a confirmed, certified purebred, you already know what kind of health risks to watch out for.
However, if your dog is a mutt or even a purebred without certification, there’s no telling what kind of diseases or illnesses his genetics put him at risk for. That is, unless you know about his heritage! With the right DNA test, owners are able to get a detailed list of health conditions to watch out for.
Once you know what risks you need to worry about, you can start taking the right steps to prevent those conditions. For example, if you find out your dog is at high risk of diabetes, you can make the necessary changes to their diet right now so that they never get it in the first place!
Once you get the report, you can also take the dog DNA test results to your vet. This will also help them make better-informed decisions about your dog’s health care!
#3 Learn Surprising Facts about Your Dog through Dog DNA Testing
With the increase in dog DNA testing, people are finding a lot of surprising things about their dogs. For example, a group of researchers found out that about 50% of the “Pit Bulls” living in shelters in Florida actually did not contain a single drop of Pit Bull genes. They weren’t related to any breed lumped into that category at all.
You might have thought your dog was one breed only to have a DNA test reveal that it isn’t even slightly related to that breed at all!
This makes it a great thing to do with puppies. Let’s say you get a puppy and expect it to stay pretty small since it looks like a small breed. In a while, it might surprise you when you realize that your small pup has shot up to a 60+ pound adult. In this case, you can avoid learning those surprising facts about your dog too late! Find out the pup’s DNA now and you’ll get a more accurate idea of how big it will actually get.
#4 Use Dog DNA Testing to Craft the Optimal Breed-Specific Diet
Just as every breed comes with their own health risks, they also come with their own dietary needs. For example, some breeds need more protein while others need more carbs. If you want to give your dog the absolute highest quality of life, tailor their diet to their exact needs.
To do that, you first need to know what those needs are. With dog DNA testing, you can find out exactly what breed genetics your pet has. From there, do some research on each of those breeds and create a customized diet plan for your pup.
For example, a dog with a genetic predisposition for arthritis would need to have inflammatory foods removed from their diet. A genetic predisposition to grow large and muscular puts your dog at risk for certain complications caused by rapid growth. So these breeds need a special diet that stabilizes their growth rate.
A custom diet is one of the best ways to prevent your dog from ever getting the illnesses they are prone to. It also helps make sure they are getting exactly what their body needs at the genetic level.
Something to Keep in Mind about Dog DNA Testing
Like all products, not all dog DNA tests are equal. Some dog breed tests are more precise than others. Some provide certain information but leave out other information. You’ll need to shop around for the dog DNA test that can tell you exactly what you’re hoping to learn.
For example, some companies make tests specifically for mutts so they can find the exact blend of breeds. Other tests will only be able to confirm whether a purebred is truly purebred. And you’ll need another kind of test if you’re trying to look for potential health risks.
Don’t just buy the most popular brand. Do your research. You might even call your vet and ask for recommendations. You can also call a few different dog DNA testing companies directly. That way you can ask them what kind of tests they offer and what information they can provide.
The Final Verdict on Dog DNA Testing
With the rise of affordable at-home dog DNA testing, finding out about your canine’s heritage is a fun and worthwhile investment. It’s not essential, but it can teach you a lot about your pooch. So if you’ve got the money to spare and the curiosity, go ahead and join the craze!