How A Dna-test Works (interprinting The Results)

Discussion in 'Dog Breeds' started by Mutt, Oct 1, 2012.

  1. Mutt Experienced Member

    I saw that a DNA-test was suggested in another thread and the results of the test were doubted, so I thought it would be helpful to explain how a DNA-test works:

    They search for haplotypes (DNA-clusters) that only explress themselves in particular breed and not in other breeds (they look at), so which are unique for a breed. From this it is asumed that these are the genes that have been occuring for generations within the breed.
    Af course they don't just use one dog for this but a lot of them per breed.
    So with this method they find common genes, from which they can see that these have been in the breed due to the "looks" (of the gene not the dog ;)).
    They than asume that this genes represent the ancestors of that breed. They did this with a lot of breeds and put the information in a database.
    Next the hapolytes of your dog, which are harvested by taking a saliva semple, are compared to the ones in the database (looking for similarities).
    If they find a lot of similarities of a breed, than that will determine the percentage of that breed being in the dog that is tested.
    So they name a specific breed, but this isn't correct: it is about the common ancesters of a breed.
    As far as I know there is only one database (or just a few big ones) that are used, these contain breeds that are common for the US.
    As for the credibility, I have read about people testing their polish (pound) little mix (JRT size) and they came out as bull mastiff x german shepherd mixes...
    It is however quite accurate IF the breeds in your dog are in the database (I have seen multiple results of dogs whose ancestors/breeds were known). However if this isn't the case, you can expect very weird results (the database contains a lot of breeds, but these are the most common breeds/FCI breeds).

    So when is a DNA-test an option?
    - if you are willing to spent the money (I recal it being 80 euro).
    - if you have a dog which contains breeds that are in the database (streetdogs from spain, dutch breed mixes etcetera won't give an accurate result).
    - if you are just curious what will come out and don't 'care' much about the result.
    - if you have a purebred it will/can even reveal the breeds that were used generations ago to establish the breed/the bloodline.

    a site which sells DNA-tests (with free shipping)
    Hope this helps!

    [and for some weird reason the font size is a bit messed up :confused:]
    Dlilly, Dogster, Dioritt and 2 others like this.

  2. Jean Cote Administrator

    Cool info!
    Mutt and MaryK like this.
  3. MaryK Honored Member

    Sure is Jean, great help. I'm considering having Ra Kismet DNA tested at some stage. Will have to check with the vets etc.

    Is the data base world wide?
    Mutt likes this.
  4. Dioritt Well-Known Member

    Interesting information. I was thinking of buying a friend a DNA testing kit as a Christmas present being as she has a cross breed but I'm not so sure that it's worth it now. I'll have to think on it :)
    MaryK and Mutt like this.
  5. rouen Experienced Member

    My boss used one on her big dog. He looks like a golden and maybe chow mix, reddish yellow, medium coat with lots of feathering. But he's almost pure pit according to the test. So now she tells everyone that he might snap because he's a pit. :eek::confused:
    MaryK, Dogster, Mutt and 1 other person like this.
  6. Mutt Experienced Member

    Vets aren't nessecary, just order the kit and take a swap, it won't do any harm.
    It is a US database (for all I know there are no others), with the most common breeds in the US, but it is a big list (the Puli for example is also in the list, while this breed isn't popular). Breeds that are only seen in one particular country (the dutch wetterhoun for example) however aren't listed. As aren't all the podenco breeds from Spain (the most common are, but there are a lot of varieties. So it is advisable to take a look at the database first.
    Shipping is free, so non-US people can use it without extra cost (check out the link for more info ;))
    MaryK likes this.
  7. Mutt Experienced Member

    It may be possible that the breed(s) in that dog share a lot of similair genes with the pit bull (or the other breeds beside the pit have caused the feathering)

    Determining a dogs breed (mix) on it's looks hardly ever is right.
    People always ask if Boef is a rottweiler/dobermann (mix), even people who had these breeds for several years. All aren't weird guesses because she is a big dog and black and tan, but she is a bernese mountain dog x labrador retriever. There was only one person who saw she was a Sennenhound mix (she thought greater swiss mountain dog or appenzell mountain dog, which isn't weir since Boef is shortcoated and a bernese long coated).

    People think Mazzel is a border collie x labrador or labrador (mix) or even american staffordshire bull terrier x labrador. All aren't weird guesses (border collie would explain the white markings, he looks a lot like a labrador and a american staff would be possible because he has a powerful/robust built). He however is 25% golden retriever, 37,5% labrador and 37,5% stabyhoun (we didn't do a test, but know his parents/grandparents).
    MaryK likes this.
  8. MaryK Honored Member

    Thank you Jean, will do that. But will check the list first. I've had so many different suggestions as to what Ra Kismet's lineage maybe I would like to know. But it doesn't seem overly reliable.
  9. threenorns Well-Known Member

    holy schnikey!

    i could run around saying dandy's a stabyhoun and nobody would argue - i've commented since forEVER that he's the original teflon dog bec he's only ever had three baths in his life (two after a skunk and one after rolling in something excessively vilely organic; also learned that lavender-scented baby wash is NOT a suitable substitute as the house thereafter smelled like lavender-scented poo!).

    this is dandy:


    this is a stabyhoun:


    i thought for the longest time that i should get a DNA test done but frankly, this is way more fun, lol.
    MaryK likes this.
  10. Pawtential Unleashed Experienced Member

    This is an example of a huge shelter study that totally made my mind up about DNA tests - you must have a look....


    MaryK, Dogster and Mutt like this.
  11. threenorns Well-Known Member

    i remember this one! i was invited by someone to take the survey bec i ripped into them for listing a dog as a "pit mix" when it was *absolutely* and *clearly* a frikkin yellow lab!

    i just wish i'd saved the answers (i remember that dog near the end bec of the ridiculous ears).
    MaryK likes this.
  12. Mutt Experienced Member

    Very intresting!

    This exactly shows the accuracy of the test. You can see that the test is quite accurate (can be assumed to tell the truth) when it comes to the majority of the dogs and looking at the first 2 listed breeds (#06, #09, #12, #14, #15, #16, #23, #30, #40 and so on). Though with the dogs which have probably either a lot of breeds in them (complete mutts) or breeds that aren't in the data base, the test shows results which seem very very very unlikely:
    #01 (anatolian shepherd)
    #05 (min pin, great pyrenees, afghan hound)
    #51 (toller)
    #54 (tibetan mastiff, though the bulldog I know almost for sure is in it as stated by the test)
    #55 (great dane, schipperke)

    When the percentages are high of a certain breed of the dog than you can often see the resemblance with the dog on the picture, but when the percentages are low (15 and lower) than it seems like a wild guess (which probably comes from the fact that the haplotypes have the most resemblance with the haplotypes of the breed, giving the most likely mutual ancestor).
    MaryK likes this.
  13. MaryK Honored Member

    Very interesting, now I'm looking at my beautiful mutt-i-gree and wondering 'is he or isn't he????:) Whatever the answer is the main thing is I LOVE him totally and completely - breed pffff who cares!!!!!!:love:
    Dogster likes this.

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