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« Sunday Weekly Roundup... | Main | Should we thank Michael Vick? »

May 21, 2007

Comments

Barking Mad!

Let me just say, that even if a DNA test is possible,what would be the purpose?
BSL,that would be the purpose!It would be used by silly politicians to put more innocent dogs to death.I would bet dollars to Mars bars that Animal Rights Organizations might be financial backers here.
I would like to announce to the MARS Bar folks that I will be starting my own little boycott over this nonsense.

Marjorie

On the low-low, I'm doing the test on a dog of which I know the heritage, through Metamorphix. They only have 38 "validated" breeds, and none of the pure breeds usually restricted under 'pit bull' bans, are included in that list. So, for now, there's no possibility of using this test for typical BSL.

The other company with a DNA breed identity test claims it will be ready this summer. Since they claim they will be able to test for most of the breeds recognized in North America, they're more of a danger, in terms of BSL misuse. But that remains to be seen.

Still, I know something about this testing. The lead up to these tests were trials are stringently purebred dogs.

Personally, this makes me very skeptical. My 'spidey sense' tells me their tests won't hold up in the larger dog population (more genetic variation than any test group), and is almost assuredly little more than a guessing game, when it comes to mixed breeds (save...if the test really, really works, and the test subject is a dog that is the product of two different, but purebred, parents).

Mixed breeds of unknown parentage are already a guessing game, from a visual standpoint. I'm wondering if the company will just claim their findings are this or that, and assume the dog's owner won't have any way to prove it, one way or another.

...Think about it. If you KNOW your mixed breed dog's parents were a Labrador/Shepherd mix and a Boxer/Rhodie cross, then you likely wouldn't bother having the dog tested...unless you're someone like me, who wants to test the company's claims. I think it's reasonable to assume that most people using this test won't really have a clue as to the actual breed make-up of their dogs. This means they'll pretty much accept anything the company tells them...within reason, of course. But, when you add that Metamorphix encourages people to send in a photo of the dog to be tested (to be made into a certificate, once the test is done, of course)...well...my 'spidey sense' is more than just 'tingling'. (Needless to say, I won't be providing any information about the dog to either company. Fake name. No information on height, weight, colouring, coat length, etc. If the test works, it should work blind, right?) ;-)

If either company's results are relevant (i.e. they come back with a definitive answer, as opposed to undetermined) you can be sure I'll be writing about it...good or bad.

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