5 Best Dog DNA Test Kits

Dog DNA tests are like 23andMe for your furry family member. Only one stands out from the pack!
By Kelly Villa, August 2021
dog dna test reviews
The Bark is an affiliate of Kinship, a division of Mars pet care. Kinship's portfolio of brands includes Wisdom Panel.

With adoptions on the rise and nearly three quarters of U.S. households owning a pet, it makes sense that we, as pet parents, are eager to find the answers to all things dog. Recent studies have found that mixed-breed dogs represent more than half of all dogs who share our homes — more than any single purebreed. The mixed-breed dog truly is America’s dog!

If your mixed-breed pup has really unique markings, curious behavioral tendencies, or chronic health issues, you can’t help but wonder where those traits came from. Are Poodle-like curls a sign that your dog could be hypoallergenic? Is your puppy nipping your ankles and herding your kids because they’re part Cattle Dog? Does your fluffy, escape artist have husky genes? Are those Dalmatian spots? What type of dog do I have?

Guessing a mixed-breed dog's ancestry is a lot harder than it looks — studies show that identifying a dog's breed by their physical appearance is only correct 25% of the time. Enter: Dog DNA tests. Thanks to this technology, it is incredibly easy (and fun) to dig into your dog’s genetics and discover their origins. But not all tests are created equal: Some dog DNA tests offer more in-depth breed detection and on-point genetic information than others. Why does that matter? Many dog breeds are predisposed to certain inherited health and behavioral characteristics. For example, Labrador Retrievers are prone to proopiomelanocortin (POMC) deficiency, which causes severe obesity that begins at an early age, and herding dog breeds often test positive for the Multidrug Resistance Mutation (MDR1) gene, which puts them at a higher risk for medical complications during otherwise common procedures due to medication sensitivities.

But with your lovable mutt’s genetic information at your fingertips, you can not only be aware of potential genetic conditions to keep an eye out for, but you can also be a proactive pet parent and schedule annual tests to get ahead of the game. Think of it this way — if there was a particular health issue in your own family history, you would take the steps to prevent yourself from inheriting it, right? Well, pets are family too!

Dog DNA test kits are generally affordable and simple to use — you are just a cheek swab away from getting to know all about your pup. But which DNA test should you choose? We did some recon and found that the Wisdom Panel™ dog DNA test was by far the best in class because it boasts the world’s largest breed database, ensuring its results are over 98% accurate. Below, we break down more reasons why it beats the competition...

best dog dna test wisdom panel

1. Wisdom Panel PremiumThe Bark’s Top Pick!

With the Wisdom Panel dog DNA test, you're getting a superior product at a reasonable price. The science behind it was developed by world-class geneticists and veterinarians. And in 2021, Wisdom Panel introduced a new breed detection system that consistently shows error rates 2-4x lower than the industry standard—making it the most accurate dog DNA service on the market. And their breed reference database (more than 21,000 samples and counting) is larger than any other. So, even the rarest of breeds won’t slip through the cracks. Then their easy-to-use interface makes it effortless to view your dog's breed breakdown — listing each breed in the mix all the way down to 1% — with over 98% accuracy.

You can even trace your pup’s ancestry back to their great-grandparents! But the best part? With more than 210 genetic health tests, from drug sensitivities to vision disorders to mobility problems, you’ll be better prepared when it comes to your pet’s health. And if you still have questions, Wisdom Panel offers a free consultation with a licensed vet to explain your dog’s health results. 

  • Over 98% accurate
  • Screens for 350+ breeds
  • 210+ genetic health tests
  • 35+ trait tests including coat type, color, and ideal weight
  • Multi-generational family tree
  • Veterinarian consultation available
  • $159

wisdompanel.com

embark dog dna test

2. Embark Health & Breed ID

The Embark Dog DNA test also helps dog owners learn more about their dog's breed makeup and health risks. Embark only lists breeds identified with high confidence and excludes low percentage results as they aren't reflective of true ancestry. Their Relative Finder feature will notify you if other dogs who have taken the test share a common ancestor with your pup. Embark also shares photos of dogs who have similar breed mixes so you can see other cute pups like yours.

  • Analyzes over 200k genetic markers
  • Screens for 350+ breeds and varieties
  • 200+ genetic health tests
  • Canine Relative Finder feature
  • Veterinarian consultation available
  • $199

embarkvet.com

dna my dog dna test

3. DNA My Dog

The DNA My Dog test is a good option for budget shoppers just curious about their dog’s breed mix. While it doesn't screen for nearly as many breeds or offer insights into your pet’s health, this bare-bones pet dna test is easy to use and requires no technical (iPhone app) skills. After swabbing your dog, you simply mail the sample and wait for results to arrive 2-3 weeks later by email as a PDF.

  • Screens for 100+ breeds
  • Easy to use, no login required
  • Shows DNA breakdown of breeds by level, rather than a percentage
  •  Limited health information
  • $68.99

dnamydog.com

orivet dog dna test

4. Orivet Mixed-Breed Identification

Orivet has DNA-profiled over 150,000 dogs and cats since it launched in October 2010, but in that time, the interface for the Orivet Mixed-Breed Identification remains less intuitive than that of its competitors. Orivet dog DNA test kit provides adult weight prediction for puppies, nutritional suggestions, and can give you alerts and advice on routine health care.

  • Screens for 350+ breeds
  • Weight prediction (for pets under 12 months)
  • Shows DNA breakdown of breeds percentage
  • Targeted for breeders and vets
  •  Limited health information
  • $109.00

orivet.com

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