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Dog Paternity Tests – Canine Owners Take The Lead


It’s a well known fact that some humans can be mad about their pets, doting on them as if they were their babies. So it’s no wonder that a news report in America recently reported on the dog owner who carried out paternity tests on her dog.

Dog Paternity Testing

Canine parentage tests or canine paternity tests involve DNA analysis to confirm or exclude whether a tested dog has sired a litter of puppies. Samples from the puppy/puppies, the sire and ideally the mother need to be included. A method used for DNA testing and amplification of DNA in both humans and dogs is PCR or polymerase chain reaction. The process is complex in terms of laboratory DNA extraction but the method provides accurate and reliable results. Generally, sampling is performed by rubbing cotton swabs (refer to our glossary for definition of “swabs” and other terms mentioned here) in the mouth thereby collecting sufficient amounts of DNA for scientists to analyse. Results of dog parentage testing are 99.99% accurate. Another popular test is canine disease testing which determines whether a given dog is carrying certain disease causing genes which are often predominant in that breed. Sampling for this type of test is also via swabs. Click here for more about dog paternity testing and other canine tests.

Dog Owners Take the Lead

The dog in question was called Calgary, her owners were suspicious when Calgary’s puppies arrived. They looked nothing like who they thought the daddy dog was. What followed was an investigation that went beyond rumours and speculation about the neighbours’ dogs. The owners chose to opt for paternity tests to uncover the real father of the pups.

Doggy DNA Samples

DNA samples were taken for the canine tests, and the truth was revealed – Calgary had got it together with a neighbour’s Rottweiler, Harley. But that’s not all; the paternity tests revealed she also had affairs with a stray dog that had been called Ted, and a ‘handsome husky’ called Joshua.

The Jerry Springer Spaniel Show

The story of the dog’s three different lovers revealed through paternity DNA tests was dubbed a ‘paternity scandal, reminiscent of The Jerry Springer Show’. The tests were a result of DNA breakthroughs into canine genetics. It’s well known that scientists are working on the human genome and research into DNA is uncovering new ground in medical science and understanding. But scientists have now also mapped the dog genome.

Canine Paternity Tests, Genetic Disease and Lineage

The research into doggy DNA means not only can paternity tests be performed on pooches, but there is a whole variety of DNA tests that can also help identify hereditary disease in dogs and reveal the secrets of mixed breeds. As well the ability to solve paternity disputes between mutts, it’s now possible for owner’s to find out about their dog’s lineage. Dogs are after all integral to many people’s lives and paternity tests, DNA tests for genetic disease and behaviour shows how much they are part of the family for many of us.

The developments show that although DNA can help us understand the secrets of all human life, it can’t explain why we are so dedicated to our dogs. Perhaps it’s in our DNA.