We have some seriously beautiful, lovable, loyal dogs.
They serve as our protectors here on the homestead, and we do everything we can to give them fun and fulfilled doggy lives.
I would be lying, though, if I claimed to have any idea what breed this one is.
When we got him, they said he was a Doberman. It's since been made clear that he is definitely not a Doberman. Not all Doberman, anyway.
He varies from a pure-bred Doberman in quite a few genetic traits including stance, size and…well…intelligence. My Bjorne, sweet as he is, is dumb as a box of rocks. It's likely due in part to brain inflammation from when he had Parvo, but people who encounter him and his weird behavior are always curious about his lineage.
We're working with the company that provides the Mars Veterinary Wisdom Panel 3.0 dog DNA test, a simple cheek swab that tests 321 markers to evaluate possible pedigree trees for the last three generations. Owners can learn if their dog is a single breed or receive a complex family tree with up to eight different great-grandparent breeds! The company is swabbing the DNA of a number of dogs in a series of events called Swabathon. It's an awesome initiative, because dog owners who know their dog's genetics can better understand their behavior and look out for breed-specific health issues. The test also screens for MDR1, a genetic mutation that causes some dogs to have severe adverse reactions to common drugs.
Visitors who bring their dogs to an event in their area can get them swabbed on-site for a special price, or take home a discounted do-it-yourself kit. Within three weeks of the cheek swab test, dog owners are emailed an official Ancestry Report revealing their dog's genetic background.
This would be an awesome gift for dog-lovers. My grandma would have flipped over a certificate detailing the history of her precious terrier, Holly! My dad could have known what breed his presumed Chihuahua-Lancashire-Russel actually was. And I could stop referring to Bjorne as my “Dobermutt.”
Good news all around.
Follow Mars Veterinary Wisdom Panel on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest for more doggie insights. If you're in Southern California, stop in to America's Family Pet Expo in Costa Mesa from April 10-12 to learn more and pick up a discounted swab kit for $49.99. They'll also be headed to Vail (Mountain Games, wooooh!), Austin, Franklin and Pomona. Get more details at wisdompanel.com.