Best Dog DNA Test Kits for 2021 by Money



DNA testing of dogs can tell us a lot more than the breed of our four-legged companions. They also provide information on why dogs exhibit certain characteristics, such as the length and color of their hair.

More importantly, a dog DNA test can identify a pet’s disposition to a variety of diseases or genetic conditions. This will let you know if your pet is at risk for certain health problems.

While having a particular gene doesn’t necessarily mean your dog will develop a health problem associated with that marker, this information can help you plan for the future. For example, if you know what types of illnesses your pet is most susceptible to, you can develop an appropriate nutrition and wellness plan with the help of your veterinarian. You can also make a more informed decision during the assessment pet insurance plans.

Dog DNA sampling kits are easy to use and usually consist of three simple steps. First, you activate or register the kit by going to a link in the instructions. Second, you take a swab or two from the cheeks before or at least 30 minutes after your dog has eaten. Finally, you send the sample using prepaid postage which is included in the kit. Then all you have to do is wait for the results by email, which should arrive within a few weeks.

DNA testing kits for dogs cost between $ 50 and $ 200, and those at the high end tend to offer the most comprehensive analyzes.

Dog DNA test buying guide

At-home dog DNA testing is a fairly recent phenomenon, and there aren’t many brands to choose from yet. Likewise, the tests offered and the sample submission process do not differ much from company to company.

However, there are three main factors to consider when deciding which kit to buy:

• Type of event. What type of DNA test do you want? There are three main options: a basic breed identification kit, a genetic disease kit, and a full test that includes both.

In addition to the basics, brands like Embark and Orivet offer unique services. Embark adds a social factor by giving pet owners access to a Relative Finder database, where they can locate dogs that share DNA with their own and possibly chat with owners. Orivet, on the other hand, offers access to the LifePlan program, in which pet owners receive personalized advice for their pet’s welfare based on their test results.

• Precision. When it comes to the accuracy of DNA testing for dogs, it is important to consider the size of each brand’s database and the number of DNA markers used to identify breeds. Generally speaking, these are the two main variables used to analyze your dog’s DNA sample.

Most companies associate and compare information with their database. This process is usually carried out using a sophisticated computer algorithm that repeatedly analyzes the DNA sequences of the submitted sample until it finds the most accurate result.

Embark and Wisdom Panel both claim to have the largest database with over 350 races and types. At the lower end of the scale is DNA My Dog, which recognizes a total of 97 breeds.

• Speed ​​of results. In most cases, results are delivered by email within two to five weeks of receipt of the sample by the testing company. Some companies also send progress updates or allow you to track the sample once it is received.

Best Dog DNA Tests

1. Best overall: Get on board the dog breed and health DNA test

Best dog DNA test

In partnership with Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, Embark claims to offer the most comprehensive canine DNA test on the market. Together, they have developed proprietary genotyping technology that makes it easy to find canine DNA, as well as the only database to find your dog’s parents.

Normally priced at $ 169, the Embark Breed & Health Kit test uses 200,000 genetic markers, which help identify over 350 breeds (including wolf, dingo, and coyote hybrids) and over 190 health issues. in 16 different areas – cardiovascular, metabolic, hormonal, skeletal, etc. Plus, with each kit, pet owners have access to the Embark Relative Finder database, where you can connect with dog owners who share DNA with yours.

Embark also offers a simpler dog DNA kit for $ 129, the Get on board Breed identification. Unlike the Breed & Health kit, this one does not test for genetic conditions, but offers all other services, such as breed identification, trait testing, and access to the Relative Finder.

Results can take up to five weeks, and Embark provides updates until they’re ready.

2. Editor’s choice: Essential Wisdom Panel

Best dog DNA test

Wisdom Panel uses more than 1,800 genetic markers to analyze dog DNA tests, and these can help identify genes that can cause disease in a dog breed. The brand’s most affordable kit, the Wisdom Panel Essential, allows you to discover your dog’s ancestry up to three previous generations.

Regularly priced at just under $ 100, the Wisdom Panel Essential includes a test that provides insight into over 35 different traits, from a dog’s coat and eye color to body shape and weight. ideal. This gives an idea of ​​how your dog has inherited his appearance and distinctive qualities. The kit also tests over 25 genetic mutations that could potentially cause problems during routine procedures or even become medical emergencies, such as hemophilia, which can cause excessive bleeding, and multi-drug resistance (MDR1), which may cause negative reactions to drugs due to limited absorption and distribution of the drug.

If you want to track your dog a little further, you can try the Premium Wisdom Panel, which sells for $ 159.99. It offers all of the Essential Kit tests, as well as screening for over 200 genetic health issues. Additionally, a vet will give you a follow-up call if your dog’s results show a potential health threat.

On average, Wisdom results are delivered between two and three weeks after receiving your sample.

3. Best for low prices: DNA identification kit of my dog ​​breed

Best dog DNA test

At around $ 70, the DNA My Dog Breed Identification Kit is a perfect affordable option for pet owners or dog shelters who want to learn the basics of an animal’s breed, traits, and disease predispositions.

Compared to Embark and Wisdom, DNA My Dog has a smaller database. His test only recognizes 97 breeds commonly found in North America and recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC). Nonetheless, the company claims to have been able to match breed for over 99% of the samples received.

This particular kit does not test for wolf and coyote hybrids (something that is included in Embark’s test), but if you think your dog may have wolf DNA, you can purchase the DNA test my hybrid dog for $ 89.99. This offers the same tests as the breed identification kit, in addition to the hybrid test.

DNA My Dog lists the composition levels of breeds. For pure breeds you only get an S level (for a single breed match), but for mixed breeds there are up to five different levels. Each level represents a breed in your dog’s DNA. Level 1 has the highest percentage, 61% to 99%. Subsequently, level 2 represents a range of 40% to 60%; Level 3, 26% to 39%; Level 4, 10% to 25%; and level 5 below 10%. So the results, for example, could show that your dog is a level 1 Maltese, a level 2 poodle, a level 3 chihuahua, etc. If you want to know more precise percentages, this type of breakdown may not be precise enough for you.

DNA My Dog will usually email you the results within two weeks of receiving your sample. In addition to the test results, you receive a certificate that includes a photo of your dog and his breed (s). The photo must be uploaded during the kit registration process or can be sent anytime before the final results arrive.

4. Ideal for medical screening: Orivet Dog DNA Health Screen & Life Plan

Best dog DNA test

The Orivet Dog DNA Health Screen & Life Plan Kit (List Price: $ 94.95) is ideal for pet owners who are already familiar with their dog’s breed, but want to learn more about their characteristics and potential genetic conditions. . The test analyzes the genetic makeup of dogs and detects more than 200 health problems. The results reveal detailed information about your dog’s health risks based on breed, age, weight, gender, and lifestyle.

With each kit, pet owners have access to Orivet’s life plan, which includes personalized advice for each stage of life and routine care reminders. This allows you to create a comprehensive wellness program that you can implement with the suggestions of your vet.

Orivet also offers two additional DNA test kits, the Mixed breed DNA identification test, designed to determine the breeds of your dogs, and Orivet’s most comprehensive DNA test, the GenoPet 5.0, which reveals breed as well as a predisposition to genetic diseases. Both kits also include LifePlan.

5. Ideal for mixed breeds: Get on board the dog breed identification DNA test

Best dog DNA test

The Embark Breed Identification Kit typically costs $ 40 less than Emark’s premium test, and is ideal for pet owners who just want to find out their dog’s breed and family tree.

With your purchase, you gain access to Emark’s distinctive database for finding your dog’s loved ones – if, of course, they’ve also undergone DNA testing with the company. This way you can chat with their owners and maybe even consider scheduling a play date for your dog, if he lives nearby.

Unlike the Breed & Health kit, this one does not include testing for conditions or genetic traits. However, you can later decide to get the reports by upgrading the account at an additional cost. In this case, you don’t have to worry about dabbing your dog’s cheeks again, as the company will use the information already collected in the database.

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From science to safety, here’s how to determine which DNA test kit is right for you


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