Saturday, May 23, 2009

Kirby's DNA Results are In!

The results of Kirby's Canine Heritage DNA breed test have arrived! Drum roll please...

Primary DNA: None

This is not surprising according to the CH people..."very few mixed breed dogs have a breed listed in Primary. The dog must have a purebred parent to have a breed in this category. Even then, the breed can end up in Secondary."

Secondary DNA: "Reports the DNA of breeds detected at significant levels within your dog. Breeds in this category can have a strong influence on your dog’s appearance and/or behavior." Kirby has only one in this category:


Ok, that was totally unexpected...

In the Mix DNA: "In the Mix category identifies breeds that appear in your dog’s DNA, but only in small amounts. Sometimes, they may represent breeds earlier in your dog’s ancestry. They may have no bearing on your dog’s appearance and/or behavior."

Lhasa Apso


Shetland Sheepdog

Unknown DNA: Says CH: "We have the markers for 106 breeds. However, there are 1100 dog breeds in the world. It is apparent that your dog is also comprised of another breed or breeds that we do not have the markers for."

The "In the mix" breeds are not as surprising to me as the Chihuahua. I had considered Lhasa Apso previously, given Kirby's body shape and underbite. We had also guessed that some sort of collie or sheepdog might be in there because of the way Kirby herds us down the beach...and there's a bit of that sheltie look about him at times, especially through the face.

But Chihuahua? That breed has not come up in ANY conversation about Kirby EVER. Wow.

I'm really surprised there isn't any terrier there. Or Schnauzer. Or Dachsund. And while he doesn't look particularly like a German Shepherd other than his coloring, the shelter thought his mom was a German Shepherd mix, so we figured it was a given. But based on her picture and Kirby's DNA, she must be some sort of collie mix.

But does this mean his dad was probably some sort of Chihuahua/Lhasa Apso mix? Apparently "Chi-Apsos" are one of the latest designer dogs - yes, people are actually crossing them on purpose. Although I think it's more likely Kirby's dad was the "design" of some teeny little Romeo who dug his way under the neighbor's fence...

Now that I think about it, Chihuahua might explain the Baja connection. Our friend Cheryl, who spends the winters in Baja and has a little Kirby look-alike dog named Paco, says there are little dogs that look like Kirby and Paco running all over the beaches of Baja. Perhaps some Kirby ancestor made the trek up to Northern California from Mexico, bringing his ancient Toltec dog DNA and some scruffy, non-DNA-mapped Baja dog along with it.

In any case, Kirby's the same loveable, sweet, spunky, bouncy, waggy, happy little dog he's always been. And after all the pondering and blog posts and dog park conversations we've had whenever someone asks "what kind of dog is he?" we're now going to have to get used to giving some different responses.

Chihuahua/Lhasa Apso/Collie/Shetland Sheepdog/Mystery Dog.


Tara said...

Not sure if the company that did your dog's DNA really knows what they are doing. There aren't even 1100 different breeds of dogs in the world. Can't believe that's what they said. There are really only 400.

ScruffyDog said...

It really depends on where you look. I've seen the 400 breeds listed in various places, but Desmond Morris' book "Dogs: The Ultimate Dictionary of Over 1000 Breeds" included a number of breeds that are not officially recognized by kennel clubs or associations. I would bet that's what they're referring to. Although I'm going to ask and find out!

By the way, do you work for one of the other dog DNA companies? And if you do and want to offer to do another test of Kirby's DNA for a second opinion, please let me know. That might be an interesting head-to-head comparison...although I don't know how we would prove who is right. :-)

dnaattorney said...

I wasn't aware of this use of DNA test, until now. Thanks for the info.

Patrice said...

I am not also aware of such things like DNA tests for dog breeds. Very informative post and I learned a lot.

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