The Embark dog DNA test looks for more than 175 breeds and screens for over 160 genetic health conditions.
The company sent a free test for my mutt Ace. You can get a dog DNA test here.
This post is sponsored by Embark Veterinary, Inc.
Embark dog DNA test review and coupon code
The Embark dog DNA test is simple to use and comes with clear instructions. You just swab your dog’s cheek, seal the sample and mail it back to Embark in the pre-paid return package provided.
The results are available within roughly 6 to 8 weeks or less.
Most mutt owners are curious what breeds are in their dogs’ family trees. The Embark dog DNA test is able to test for over 175 breeds – and even wolf, coyote, dingo and village dog ancestry.
Together, these breeds cover over 98% of dogs in America, according to Embark. It tests for the breeds in your dog’s family tree going back to his great grandparents.
My mutt Ace’s breed results were fun to read (more on that below). The results were surprising, but I can see the characteristics of each breed in Ace.
Embark also tests for more than 160 genetic health conditions for mutts and purebred dogs. This could reveal if your dog is predisposed to anything before symptoms occur. Obviously some dog owners would want to know this information and others might prefer not to know. So keep that in mind before you decide to do this test.
Some examples of health conditions Embark tests for:
- Congenital hypothyroidism
- Exercise-Induced Collapse
- Multidrug Sensitivity
Thankfully Ace did not have any of the genetic health conditions but the test showed he is a carrier of a skin disorder called Ichthyosis. This means he won’t show symptoms but could pass it to his puppies (not happening as Ace was neutered a decade ago!).
For more information on the science behind Embark, the company has a lot of helpful info on its site HERE.
Once you send in your dog’s sample, Embark extracts your dog’s DNA and runs it on a custom-built genetics “chip,” according to its website. Embark’s test chip screens for over 200,000 genetic markers, using more genetic information than any other dog DNA test on the market.
What is the cost of an Embark dog DNA test?
The cost for a kit is $129.
There are discounts if you want to order kits for multiple dogs.
My mutt Ace’s results with the Embark dog DNA test
Ace’s mixed breeds:
The kit identified 5 breeds for Ace.
Breed #1: 62.3% Labrador. No surprise there. Ace has Labrador on both his maternal and paternal side. I think anyone could’ve told ya that!
Breed #2: 23% German shorthaired pointer. This did not surprise me either. I’ve always thought he looked like a pointer, especially in his younger years.
#3: 5.5% Golden retriever
#4: 4.7% Chesapeake Bay retriever
And breed #5: 4.5% Irish setter (total surprise)
All five of Ace’s breeds are from the AKC Sporting Dog Group. Embark did not detect any hounds in Ace’s heritage.
Where do you think he gets the droopy eyes, droopy jowls and all the drool? The Chesapeake? Or do you still think there’s a bit of hound in there somewhere? Who knows …
Ace’s potential “family tree”
Here’s what Embark had for Ace’s results and his potential family tree:
Pros of the Embark dog DNA test:
- Tests for 175 breeds, including wolf, coyote, dingo and village dog ancestry
- Tests for more than 160 genetic health conditions (helpful for purebred dogs and mutts)
- Discounts for multiple dogs
- Easy to send in a sample (no blood test or vet visit needed)
- Nice user friendly website
Cons of the dog DNA test:
- Embark can’t provide medical diagnoses
- Takes about 8 weeks to get results once you mail your dog’s sample
- You have to log in and create an account on Embark’s website before sending in your dog’s sample
- Some dog owners might prefer not to know about their dog’s potential health problems
What’s unique about Embark’s dog DNA test?
Embark’s test is the only dog DNA test that provides you results for over 160 genetic health conditions, according to its website.
It also uses 20 times as much genetic information as other tests, according to the company. This allows Embark to provide the most accurate breed identification scientifically possible at this time.
I would recommend the Embark dog DNA test for …
I recommend this kit for people who are curious about knowing their mutt’s potential heritage. If you’ve recently adopted a young or middle-aged dog, the kit can be helpful for predicting potential genetic health problems that might come up.
The kit would be a great gift for anyone who has a mixed breed dog. Most mutt owners are curious what breeds their mutts really are.
Giveaway! Win an Embark dog DNA test
Our giveaway has ended.
Do you have a mixed-breed dog? Have you tried a dog DNA kit?
Let me know in the comments!
Please share this post with anyone who might be interested in a mixed-breed dog DNA test.
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Related posts and more pictures of Ace:
- My senior dog Ace
- Not your ordinary black Lab mix
- Dog genetic testing with Royal Canin (Rubicon Days blog)