Wisdom Panel is one of the most widely used DNA tests for dogs.
It’s used by owners worldwide to determine the exact heritage of their dog.
There’s no question that Wisdom Panel is one of the most popular DNA tests for dogs.
The question is: should you use it?
Related: DNA Testing For Mixed Breeds: What you need to know.
What is Wisdom Panel
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Wisdom Panel is one of the most widely used DNA testing companies for dogs.
- This DNA testing service utilizes saliva swabbed from the inside of your dog’s cheek to determine your dog’s genetic background back to its great grandparents, give you a predicted weight profile, and test for the MDR-1 genetic mutation.
- The company has a database of over 250 breeds, types, and varieties of dogs, and it can be used for mixed-breed, designer, and purebred dogs.
How Does Wisdom Panel Work
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Wisdom Panel DNA testing is quite simple.
- You order a kit, and you’re off.
- When the kit arrives in the mail, you simply swab the inside of your dog’s cheek with the provided testing swab and put the swab into the provided transport container.
- You then mail the sample back to Wisdom Panel in a postage paid container.
- Once the sample is received, Wisdom Panel will run it through their system, identifying lineage, predicting the dog’s weight, and checking for the MDR-1 mutation.
- While lineage and weight profile can be convenient, the MDR-1 mutation detection is extremely useful. That’s because this mutation makes dogs sensitive to certain drugs used to prevent worms and the like.
Is Wisdom Panel Worth It
That’s actually tough to say. It consistently receives high ratings from users, so people are obviously happy with it.
While it is generally given high marks, remember that these tests are not the be-all end-all and they don’t always perform as expected.
I have a friend who did this test for both of her dogs. One is a puggle – a pug/beagle mix, and the other is a bit more… mixed up, but there is obviously pug in it, as well.
When she got her test back, Wisdom Panel advised her that the Puggle had Dalmation in it, which seems highly unlikely, given his physical appearance.
She knows for sure that his parents were a Beagle and a Pug. After that, she’s not sure, but in my 7 years of working at the vet, I find it extremely suspect that a dog which is so obviously a puggle could have Dalmation anywhere in the Wisdom Panel family tree range.
I find the Wisdom Panel test results to be even more suspect because one entire side of the family tree is grayed out, simply saying mixed breed on every branch.
Her Wisdom Panel experience with her other more mixed dog is even more unlikely, in my opinion.
The other dog is quite tall, short-haired, and has a face that looks to be a cross between a Pug and a Pitbull. Wisdom Panel advised her that the second guy was a mixture of Pug, which is to be expected, Cocker Spaniel, and a Yorkie.
To protect her privacy, I’m not posting any pictures, but trust me. If you saw this dog, you’d say, “There’s no way he has Yorkie or Spaniel in him.”
So, is Wisdom Panel worth it?
That’s tough to say.
My friend’s experience is the only one I have a personal connection with, and I was not overly impressed with what Wisdom Panel had to offer.
However, as I said earlier, this test receives consistently high ratings.
Wisdom Panel is not cheap, so my advice would be to assess the value of this test for you and your dog, thoroughly read every customer review you can find, and use that to make your decision.
What do you think? Under what circumstance would you feel Wisdom Panel was worth the expense?
Share your thoughts in the comments.