How Does A Dog DNA Test Work

How Does A Dog DNA Test Work
If you are a dog owner, you probably know the term “Dog DNA Test”. But have you ever thought about DNA testing of your dog? On the other hand, if you are thinking about testing your dog’s DNA, or a little bit confused about whether they really work or curious about how the DNA test work, then this article is for you.

We have breakdown almost every dog DNA test services and come to a conclusion, how the companies actually do for your dog DNA test.

Before going into the deep, let us talk about purposes of dog DNA test or what will you get from this as a dog owner.

Purposes of Dog DNA Test

When people ask you about your dog’s ancestry, what will be your answers? With the DNA test of your dog, you can then say the appropriate answer with proud. However, the main purpose of dog DNA test is to identify the breed or breed composite with quite helpful information about your dog genes.  

A dog DNA test can bring some shed on your dog’s heritage or genes. It seems fun to know what kind of dog you have own. You can learn more helpful things from your dog DNA test than just identifying a dog’s lineage. By knowing your dog’s breed can help you tailor his training and help you to look out for its breed-specific diseases.

You can also get some information health information from the dog DNA test. Check out our How Effective and Beneficial Are Dog DNA Tests article to know details about the health benefits of dog DNA test.

Types of Dog DNA Test

There are several types of Dog DNA test. The main important things are “swab test” and “blood test” and both of them claim to unravel your dog’s breed ancestry.

The swab sample has the advantage of collection procedure which will make the things easy for a dog owner. With this procedure, the dog owner can collect the samples easily at home. But there are some drawback also if you go for swab sample collecting procedure. It includes the risk of contamination and insufficient cells being obtained for a successful testing.

Whereas, blood samples are collected by a veteran and the chances of contamination and insufficient samples are reduced.

Tips: There are several factors to consider when it requires sample collecting like the number of breeds which will be identified, costs, turnaround time and the way of reporting the result. Find out which company does follow these factors well.

How Does Dog DNA Test Work

The basic DNA testing process is pretty simple. There are two parts of this testing. First one is collecting the samples. And the second one is done by the company you choose for your dog testing.

In most cases, you have to swab the inside of your dog’s cheek with the provided brush. This procedure is long up to 1 minute. Some kits ask for blood samples and it needs to be done at veterinarian’s office. Keep that in mind that, blood samples always yield large amounts of DNA.

Don’t be confused, both of the samples can give accurate results.

Once you have collected your samples, you have to mail them back in their provided package for analysis at their laboratory and wait for some days for the result.

When the company gets your samples, the DNA is extracted and examined at their laboratory. Remember, your dog’s DNA is compared with that of other dogs in their databases.

“All dog DNA tests on the market today have reference panels of breed dogs that encompass the vast majority of dog registrations in the U.S. and Europe,” Dr. Boyko says.

A note, the test was developed with samples from more than 13,000 purebred dogs and 1800 genetic markers.

Are you now thinking about the accuracy of the test? Here are some words for you.

This Test accuracy actually depends on numerous factors. Such as the number of markers used, the number of breeds is in the breed panel and the algorithms obviously.

As the companies run more test and add bread to their databases, the accuracy becomes improved. The companies which agree to work with your veterinarian will ensure you get the most out of your results.

The test also differs company to company.  But no worries. We have analysis most of the companies in the market and get this result.

Wisdom Health vs Embark Veterinary vs DNA My Dog

After some deep research, we found 3 very popular and worldwide accepted brands for dog DNA testing. As you can see the names of the brands in the heading, now we’ll talk about these companies and their level of accuracy.

DNA test from Wisdom Health

Wisdom Health has the largest database of dog DNA samples in the market. They also are the only one to have officially certified dog DNA test facility. They test for over 250 breeds. So, accuracy is undoubtedly high. Test kit from Wisdom Health is easy to use as it’ll be done quickly with just a cheek swab.

DNA test from Embark Veterinary

DNA test from Embark is well known and popular for their accuracy. They use over 20,000 genetic markers which ensures almost 100% accurate result. Embark also uses cheek swab to collect DNA sample from your dog. The test is a bit expensive but its worth for the result and health advice.

DNA test from DNA My Dog

DNA My Dog will give you the fastest result on this list. They are also much lower priced than other two. The only drawback is that they can’t give you best result if your buddy is a rare breed. They have only over 95 breeds in their database.

Blood sample collecting is not as easy as collecting saliva. So, we prefer those brands as none of them uses a blood sample. You can easily use those kits by yourself in your home. DNA testing has never been so easy.


If you have little time in your hand and on a tight budget, we recommend you to go for Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit from Wisdom Health. You’ll get amazing results even if your dog is from rarest breeds.

If you in a hurry and no problem with the budget but want the most accurate results, we recommend you to go for Embark Veterinary Dog DNA Test from Embark Veterinary. They will also provide you some important health information.

If you have a tight budget and in a hurry, you should go with DNA MY Dog – Canine Breed Identification Test Kit from DNA My Dog. Their result will come fine unless your dog is from any rare breed.

That’s all about how does dog DNA test work. The effectiveness of these products vary but they will give satisfactory results. We wish you good luck as you’ll get to do more for your buddy once you know its breed.

Leave a Reply