What breed is my dog? That may be the most frequently posed query by dog owners who adopted their mixed breed pooches from animal shelters and rescue organizations. It can sometimes also be the most difficult question to answer with complete accuracy.
A Briefing On Breeds
If you purchased your dog from a breeder, there should be no question regarding your dog’s breed. If you purchased your hybrid mix dog from a pet shop, you have a good idea of which two breeds were used to create the hybrid simply by reading the name of the dog’s breed. For example, a Labradoodle is a hybrid that is consistently created by crossing a Labrador retriever with a Poodle. Crossing a Cocker spaniel with a poodle creates a Cockapoo. When it comes to a true mixed breed dog, however, its lineage can be mysteriously murky. Mixed breeds result from random breeding between any two dogs, one or both of which may be purebred or a mixed breed.
How to Find Out What Breed My Dog Is
The simplest approach in attempting to determine your dog’s breed is to study the American Kennel Club’s chart of dog breeds. This chart features more than 180 dog breeds, but keep in mind that a number of additional breeds are in existence and not recognized by the American Kennel Club. If your dog is an adult, begin by comparing its size to those on the chart. Other features to consider include the length, color and texture of the coat. Compare the shapes and carriages of the ears and tail. You should also read the temperament descriptions. Finally, look for distinctive physical characteristics in your dog, such as unusually short legs or a particularly long and narrow muzzle. If your dog has greeted you with an unusual sound to its bark, take note of that as well.
Unlock the Secret of DNA
There are test kits available that are specifically designed to reveal a dog’s breed by evaluating its DNA. Some of these kits are available from laboratories through online purchase. DNA test kits typically entail taking a swab of cells from your dog’s mouth with a cotton-tipped applicator, sealing it in a sterile tube and mailing it back to the laboratory. When the laboratory analysis is complete, a report is mailed to you that lists the breeds that were detected in the sample.
Enlist the Help of a Breed Club Member
If you have strong reasons to believe that the stray dog your family fell in love with and welcomed into your home is a purebred, you may consider enlisting the observation skills of a breed club member. If you believe that you have a Labrador retriever on your hands, but you have no documentation to suggest so, contact a local Labrador retriever breed club. Someone from the club may offer to meet you and your dog, or he or she may invite you and your dog to attend the club’s next meeting. Club members who have extensive experience with Labrador retrievers in particular may be able to offer some insight.
Talk to Your Veterinarian
Upon adopting or purchasing any new puppy or dog, it is important to bring your new companion to a veterinarian within the first couple of weeks for an examination. The primary purpose of the examination is to determine the overall health of the dog and to bring the dog up to date with vaccines, spaying or neutering and heartworm prevention. This is also an opportune time to pick your veterinarian’s brain by welcoming his or her input regarding your dog’s breed. Veterinarians and their staffs see all kinds of dogs walk in and out of their clinics every day, and those experienced sets of eyes may be your best bet for finding the answers you seek. Getting those answers from your veterinarian can also be valuable in determining the best health care for your dog since certain breeds are prone to specific health problems and risks.
You may or may never figure out what breed your dog is. Its family tree may be filled with leaves that represent a variety of different breeds. In the end, your mixed breed dog provides the same level of unconditional love, companionship and loyalty as any purebred pedigree. What more can one ask of any dog? No matter what your dog’s lineage is, your dog is destined to be a beloved member of your family. Find here the most important reasons to adopt from an animal shelter and how you can help animal rescue organizations.