5 things to know about dog DNA test kit Wisdom Panel

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With the rise in popularity of at-home genetic testing kits for people, it was only a matter of time before a market emerged for genetic testing of pets.

So if you’re curious about your dog’s genetic makeup, read on before taking the plunge and buying a Wisdom Panel.

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Here’s a look at what you get from the leading dog DNA test service

Wisdom Panel is the leading service that offers dog DNA testing from the comfort of your own home.

Mars, Incorporated — the candy and food manufacturer that also has pet-related brands like Pedigree, Whiskas and Royal Canin, among others, in its portfolio — is the parent company of Wisdom Panel.

Here’s what you can expect to get when you buy your first Wisdom Panel…

The Wisdom Panel dog DNA testing kit is easy to use

The basic idea here is when you buy the kit, it comes with cheek swabs so you can collect your dog’s DNA from their saliva.

Once your samples are prepared, you activate your kit online and send the swabs to the lab inside a prepaid mailer. It’s included in the kit.

Then you have to wait. About two or three weeks later, an email will come with a link to the results of your dog’s DNA test.

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The kits come in two “flavors”

There’s a basic kit that sells for $85 at the Wisdom Panel website. It’s primary purpose is breed detection, and the kit can detect more than 250 breeds, types and varieties. You also get drug and exercise sensitivity testing and trait analysis thrown in, among other things.

This is the payoff that most people want when it comes to their animal:

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Our dog George

We also noticed a few bells and whistles that aren’t advertised with the basic kit when my family did this dog DNA test on our puppy last year.

For example, we got an adult weight prediction (21 to 36 pounds) that’s proven correct so far and it’s more than a year on since the test.

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My feeling is the entry level kit will probably suffice for most people.

But if you want to kick it up a notch, there’s also a $150 test kit option. The key differentiator here is the more expensive kit offers everything you read about above plus disease detection for more than 150 genetic conditions.

Don’t expect perfection

No matter which version of the kit you pick, you can’t expect the test results to be perfect down to the last chromosome! If you do, you’ll be setting yourself up for disappointment.

As you can see from the test results below, at least some of the genetic material (12.5%) that makes up our dog George is too far back in the lineage to be discerned.

Wisdom Panel says its dog DNA testing typically goes back about three generations. Anything beyond that is lost to history, and can be lumped into the catch-all of ‘mixed component.’

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You’ll get a customized ancestry certificate to display

If you love your dog as much as we love ours, you’ll be happy with this memento that’s included in your test results. You can print it out and frame it or just hang it on the wall!

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Here’s where you can find coupon codes and physical coupons for Wisdom Panel

You can always find an abundance of coupon codes for Wisdom Panel online just by doing a ‘Wisdom Panel coupon code‘ search on Google.

There are also in-house coupon codes on the Wisdom Panel website every so often. For example, you can take $10 off with promo code ‘FATHERSDAY2018’ right now.

What if you don’t want to order online? Maybe you’re the kind of person who likes to pick up the box and feel the merchandise in your hands before buying. In that case, your local pet store is likely to carry Wisdom Panel.

The thing is, you’re going to need a physical coupon to get some savings when buying in person. Here’s one possible solution: From time to time, Mars will put a Wisdom Panel coupon insert for its dog DNA test into select bags of pet food.

We found one such coupon in an old bag of Iams puppy food that was sitting around the house:

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Click here for a complete rundown of Mars pet brands so you can keep your eyes open for any future coupons. Your favorite brand just might be on this list!

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Theo Thimou About the author:
Theo has co-written several books with Clark Howard, including the #1 New York Times bestseller "Living Large in Lean Times."
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