How to Tell What Large Dog Breed My Stray Dog Is?

by Ledan Seja
    A large mixed-breed stray suns himself.

    A large mixed-breed stray suns himself.

    dog image by martini from Fotolia.com

    DNA testing is the most accurate method of determining a dog's breed, or breeds. A veterinarian may also be able to help determine, however, determining a mixed breed's genetics by sight is often misleading and incorrect. DNA tests for dogs can be purchased online at various websites, and are also becoming available at veterinary clinics and humane shelters. Test kits generally cost just under $60.

    Determining Breed

    Step 1

    Choose where you are going to puchase your test kit from. Several websites, including DNAmydog.com, Dog-DNA.com and HappyDogDNA.com, have test kits for purchase. You can also contact the local humane shelter or a veterinary office to inquire whether test kits are available for purchase there.

    Step 2

    Read and follow all instructions when you receive your test. Dog DNA tests use a cheek-swab method, not blood. Follow the submission instructions so you may receive your results.

    Step 3

    Carefully read through your dog's data. Several breeds may show up on his report, and it will generally break them down into levels. The levels show how dominant each breed is, for example, using the test from DNAmyDog.com, the breeds showing in level one are 75 percent of your dog's DNA; level two breeds are between 37 to 74 percent of your dog's DNA; level 3 breeds are between 20 to 36 percent of your dog's DNA; level 4 breeds are between 10 to 19 percent of your dog's DNA; level 5 breeds are less than 10 percent of your dog's DNA.

    An Item You Will Need

    • DNA test for dogs

    Tip

    • Different tests have different breeds in their database. Read through the websites of the test kits to find what breeds they encompass.

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    About the Author

    With a strong background in pets, gardening, landscapes, pests and natural ecosystems, Ledan Seja has been sharing her knowledge through writing since 2009 and has served as an expert writer in these fields. Real estate -- primarily commercial spaces and neighborhood trends -- has also been a main focus in her writing with her work appearing on 42Floors.com and more.

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