Ever wondered what breeds are in your dog?
Our updated for 2020 dog DNA testing review for your puppy looks into the top dog DNA tests on the market and gives you a few choices as to which is right for you and your canine.
Dog DNA testing can finally settle the question of what breeds make up your lovable, mixed breed dog, and even help explain your dog’s behaviors, personality traits and health conditions.
Dog DNA tests can cost anywhere from $40 to $200 USD, and take from a few weeks up to 8 weeks for the lab to process depending on the company you go with. Cheaper tests may not test for as many American Kennel Club (AKC) breeds as more expensive tests however it seems that each company is constantly increasing their dog DNA database.
The Best Dog DNA Test
Dog DNA testing is quick and painless, and can be done at home with a simple cheek swab of your pet.
Info: Whether you’re buying a dog DNA test, a puppy DNA test or a canine DNA test, they’re all the same thing.
Is Dog DNA Testing Accurate?
Dog DNA testing is accurate, but there are a few limitations:
- Dog DNA testing kits do not identify all dog breeds and most range from 80 to 250 different dog breeds. A simpler puppy DNA test may tell you that your dog’s one quarter Pug, but can’t tell you your dog’s 50% Australian Cattle Dog, because most simply don’t test for the Australian Cattle Dog breed.
- Because dog DNA testing is still fairly new, DNA kits are continually adding to the number of breeds they test for. The truth is, they’re only getting better with time.
- At best, dog DNA tests can prove a dog is 75% from one specific breed. The tests cannot determine 100% breed purity. As a result, dog DNA test results cannot be used to register a dog as a purebred however, they can give you some background and insight into your dog’s past, as well as help you to be on the lookout for possible troubles those breeds generally entertain as they get older.
Dog DNA Tests Compared
These dog DNA testing kits are all easily done at home, and don’t require a trip to the vet. A simple cheek swab is all it takes. Once you’ve sent the sample in, you’ll eventually receive a document (either online or via mail) containing information concerning you dog’s unique DNA information and ancestry.
As we go through this Amazon Dog DNA test review, we’ll see what each dog DNA test costs, what in entails and how each dog DNA test compares to others on the market.
Here’s a quick table to easily compare dog DNA tests and their respective prices and turn around times.
|Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit
|2-3 weeks by email
|Embark Dog DNA Test
|6-8 weeks by email
|DNA MY Dog - Canine Breed Identification Test Kit
|2-3 weeks by email
|Dog DNA - Canine Breed Identification Test by DNAffirm
|2-3 weeks by email
|Find My Pet DNA Dog Test
|2-3 weeks by email
Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit Review
The Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit is a top pick for owners and the most recommended Dog DNA Kit on Amazon.
With over 250 different dog breeds in their database, Wisdom Panel (formerly Mars Veterinary) has the largest canine breed database of any dog DNA test currently available online.
Their previous offering, the Wisdom Panel 2.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit, was a previous top pick for owners who were trying to find out what breeds are in their mixed breed dog. Their well loved 2.0 kit had over 2000 reviews on Amazon however their new 3.0 kit has over 5 times the amount of data they’re previous kits (versions 1.0 and 2.0) had. If you’re deciding between the two, unless there’s a great sale on the older 2.0 test, go with the newer 3.0 kit.
The Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit allows you to test between Purebreed, Mixed Breed as well as Designer Dog breed back 3 full generations.
This test compares your dog’s DNA to all the breeds in their Dog DNA database, making it a great choice if you don’t know what breeds are in your dog’s background.
With more than 250 breeds, types and varieties, the Wisdom Panel 3.0 Test Kit covers 99% of all AKC breeds and more. It also includes MDR1 drug sensitivity screening.
Prime enabled, the kit should arrive at your door within a few days. The company claims that results are available in two to three weeks online and results include a downloadable multi-page report, a Breed Certificate report plus other info like adult weight range predictions to help with nutrition and diet choices and breed specific information.
Many users reported that Wisdom Panel had the fastest turnaround time of any puppy DNA test kit services.
The Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test costs $79.99 USD at Amazon.com. The cost includes the laboratory processing fees, and shipping and handling charges.
Embark Dog DNA Test Review
The Embark Dog DNA Test gets good reviews on Amazon and provides some of the most comprehensive information about your pet in their results.
With 160 health results and over 200,000 genetic markers to choose from, the Embark Dog DNA test by Embark Veterinary provides a ton of info about your canine pal.
The Embark Dog DNA database contains over 150 breeds and even includes wolf, coyote, and village dog ancestry.
Once the results are in, you can view the info via an interactive guide on your phone, tablet or desktop computer. You can also download and print a summary report.
Embark even includes a vet report which allows allows you to share the results with your veterinarian to help give your dog the best care possible.
The company has teamed up with Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine and is certified by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals.
With a claim of over 20 times more genetic information than any other test on the market, the Embark DNA test paints a very comprehensive picture of your dog’s genetic health and ancestry.
There’s also lots of info about your dogs future health in regards to it’s genetic traits that should be able to help you prepare for possible issues that may arise as your dog ages.
Typical result timeframes are between 6 to 8 weeks so the Embark Dog DNA test takes the longest of all the tests in this group.
The Embark Dog DNA Test also costs the most of any dog DNA test in this review and goes for $189.00 USD on Amazon however, the kit does include the most information in it’s report compared to the others in this group.
Canine DNA Breed Identification Test from DNA My Dog
The DNA My Dog Canine DNA Breed Identification Test currently tests for 95 major dog breeds.
Results are promised online in less than two weeks after receipt of sample however many users stated they took longer than expected. The company says paperwork follows in the mail a few days later. An online link allows you to check the status of your dog’s test results.
Results include a custom certificate with a photo of your dog stating their unique DNA composition and a percentage breakdown of breeds in your dog. Results also include a personalized analysis of breeds found in your dog, including personality traits and genetic health concerns, including any diseases the breeds found in your dog are pre-disposed to.
The DNA My Dog kit costs $68.98 USD at Amazon.com. Processing fees are all included.
Dog DNA – Canine Breed Identification Test by DNAffirm
The Dog DNA – Canine Breed Identification Test by DNAffirm is one of the cheapest dog DNA test kits on the market.
It appears that Dog DNA by DNAffirm is actually run by DNA My Dog. Whether the two tests provide the same results is unknown. If so they have 95 dog breeds in their genetic database.
Test results from a simple cheek swab by DNAffirm take approximately two weeks after they get the sample though many users claim it took much longer for them. DNAffirm claims to be able to uncover DNA based insights that will help you better understand your dog’s behaviors, unique appearance and future wellness needs.
You get a custom photo certificate of your dog’s breed composition and a report on your dog’s dominant breeds, personality traits, and health concerns.
An interesting thing of note is the company claims that their tests have “successfully been used in court to exempt dogs showing characteristics of certain breeds (e.g., pit bull) from misguided discriminatory legislation.”
The Dog DNA – Canine Breed Identification Test by DNAffirm goes for $43.48 USD on Amazon.com.
Click here to shop for the Dog DNA – Canine Breed Identification Test by DNAffirm.
Find My Pet DNA Dog DNA Test
The Find My Pet DNA Dog Test is the newest addition to the group.
Though a lot isn’t known about the Find My Pet DNA Test due to it being so new on the market, it seems to offer comparative results to both DNA My Dog and Dog DNA.
They have a 2 week turnaround time and provide results that should give you some insights to their background including genetic predispositions to possible diseases and personality traits.
The Find My Pet DNA Dog Test goes for $79.99 USD on Amazon.com.
Dog DNA Test Kits no longer being offered on the market
When we first wrote this post a few years ago, there were several other choices for puppy DNA test kits out on the market. Some, such as the Wisdom Panel 2.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit, though still currently available from a few stores, were upgraded to the Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit by the same company. These kits have been revamped and include everything in the previous kit plus more.
We’ve also included a few others that were popular when we did a previous dog DNA test kit review for them in the past. If you’re looking into one today, it’s a good idea to instead grab one of the dog DNA test kits reviewed above.
Purebred DNA Test Kit
The Purebred DNA Test by Wisdom Panel was probably your best choice if you knew you had a purebred dog, and wanted to confirm the breed. The Purebred test was designed to compare your dog to genetically known purebreds within a specific breed.
What is a purebred? A dog is a purebred when its mother and father are members of a recognized breed and the dog’s ancestry consists of the same breed over many generations.
Because you’re testing to determine if your dog is a specific breed, this test only compared your dog against genetically known purebreds of the breed you select. You cannot use this test to see what breeds are in your dog, since the Purebred DNA test only compared your dog against the single breed you selected.
The Wisdom Panel purebred test will not give you the necessary credentials to register your dog with the AKC (American Kennel Club). Unfortunately, the Purebred DNA Test Kit is no longer being offered. The cost was $77.65.
If you’re looking for something similar, the Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit by the same company is probably your best bet.
BioPet DNA Breed Identification Kit
After settling out of court in a patent infringement suit, BioPet is no longer selling canine DNA breed identification markets. If you bought a kit on or before June 15, 2011, BioPet will process your samples (for a limited period of time) and provide results.
PetSafe Dog DNA Test Kit
Like BioPet, PetSafe is no longer selling dog DNA test kits after settling out of court in a patent infringement suit.
How is Dog DNA Testing Done?
A DNA sample taken from a swab on the inside of the cheek is as accurate as a blood test, since the DNA in the cheek and blood is the same.
Mixed breed dog DNA testing can be done done at home, using a cheek swab, so you don’t need a veterinarian to do a DNA test for your dog.
The process is simple. Basically, you order a kit, take a swab from your dog’s cheek, put the swab in a test tube, and mail the kit to the lab. A few weeks later, the lab sends you your results in the mail. There’s no need for a blood sample, since all of the DNA is taken from the swab of the inside of the dog’s cheek.
While the taking your dog’s DNA sample, it’s important to read the instructions carefully. For example, you need to be careful not to contaminate the cheek swab with your DNA. Don’t touch the cheek swab with your fingers, and be careful not to let your hair or eyelashes fall on the swab.
Dog DNA testing results are broken down into several categories:
Primary: Where the results say your dog is 50% or more from one of the recognized breeds.
Secondary: Where results say your dog is less than 50% from one of the recognized breeds. However, there’s still enough of one of the recognized breeds to make a significant impact.
Mixed: Where recognized breeds can be identified in your dog, but they have little impact on your dog’s looks or health concerns.
Some newer tests break down the dog DNA testing results into even more categories. In these tests, Level 1 indicates your dog is 75% a specific breed.
Behavior and Health
Knowing the specific breeds in your dog can give you some important clues about your dog’s behavior and health.
Some breeds are more likely to develop health issues. So knowing your dog is made of up one of those breeds can help you and your vet watch out for specific health problems. Knowing your dog’s breed can also help you adjust your dog’s diet and exercise, since breeds vary in their nutritional and exercise needs.
Your dog’s temperament is partly determined by their genetics. Knowing your dog’s breed can help you predict and identify behaviors related to their breeds. Knowing your dog is part terrier can help you nip the terrier’s dominance-related behaviors in the bud. Finding out that your dog is part Basenji, a notoriously independent breed, can help you understand why your dog has always seemed so aloof.
What Breeds can Dog DNA Testing Identify?
Depending on the lab, dog DNA testing can identify over 250 breeds, including but not limited to:
- Afghan Hound
- Airedale Terrier
- American Eskimo Dog
- Australian Shepherd
- Basset Hound
- Belgian Tervuren
- Bernese Mountain Dog
- Bichon Frise
- Border Collie
- Boston Terrier
- Bull Terrier
- Chinese Shar-Pei
- Chow Chow
- Cocker Spaniel
- Doberman Pinscher
- English Setter
- English Springer Spaniel
- German Shepherd Dog
- German Shorthaired Pointer
- Golden Retriever
- Great Dane
- Great Pyrenees
- Irish Setter
- Italian Greyhound
- Labrador Retriever
- Lhasa Apso
- Miniature Pinscher
- Norwegian Elkhound
- Parson Russell Terrier
- Pembroke Welsh Corgi
- Rhodesian Ridgeback
- Saint Bernard
- Scottish Terrier
- Shetland Sheepdog
- Siberian Husky
- West Highland White Terrier
- Yorkshire Terrier
Which Dog DNA Testing Kit Should You Buy?
If you have a mixed breed, or you simply don’t know your dog’s breed, the Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit is a great test that will accurately compare your dog to over 250 breeds and provide a trove of good information regarding your pet.
If you want the most comprehensive dog DNA test kit on the market, the Embark Dog DNA Test gets great reviews and includes more detailed results than any of the others. Of course this comes with a premium price tag as it’s the most expensive dog DNA test currently out there and also has the longest results time however it seems to have very accurate results and lots of good information.
If price is the leading factor, then the Dog DNA – Canine Breed Identification Test by DNAffirm that goes for $43.48 is going to hit the mark. It will give you the basics however know that it won’t be as accurate as the Wisdom Panel or Embark results.
So which dog DNA kit would we order ourselves? We’d probably go with the Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit as it strikes the right balance between cost, accuracy, results and time frame.
If we had a dog that demanded nothing but the best, we’d probably go with the Embark Dog DNA Test. The extra health information and most accurate reports being the deciding factor.
Curious to know your own ancestry?
Who says dogs should have all the fun? If you’re feeling left out, why not order an ancestry DNA test kit for yourself?
The AncestryDNA Test Kit gets great reviews on Amazon and is the number one consumer DNA Genetic testing kit available there. So, while you have one for your dog ,you can also view one for yourself with over a billion family connections.
You can also discover your ethnic mix across 165 regions worldwide which is roughly five times more than the next leading competitor. With over 6 million people already in the database, you can finally settle that argument with great Aunt Sally over where the family really originated from!
Curious, you can get it on Amazon here.