Not that long ago we here at Team Unruly asked you to weigh in on what breeds you thought Dahlia might be before we got back the results from her Wisdom Panel DNA test. We received many great responses, but there was a general theme among them:
1. Dahlia has some sort of retriever in her. By far this was the most popular suggestion. Guesses included Labrador Retriever, Flat-Coated Retriever, Golden Retriever, and Curly-Coated Retriever.
2. There could very well be some sort of herding breed in her mix. Most common suggestions were Border Collie and Australian Shepherd. Also suggested was the English Shepherd.
Other more minor guesses included some bits of Spaniel, Newfie, and maybe a Spitz breed, possibly a Samoyed (because she has the world’s largest tail).
My opinion, for many months now, has been that she’s a Border Collie/Golden Retriever mix. I’ve done a fair bit of research on canine genetics (or at least, the layman’s understanding of canine genetics) and found a few interesting things regarding this:
1. Short coats are dominant to long coats, which led me to believe Dahlia’s parentage came mostly from long-coated dogs.
2. Black is dominant to gold.
3. Solid coloring is dominant to parti-coloring.
You can read more on this from Retrieverman here.
What this means is that Border Collies and Golden Retrievers tend to have almost all black puppies. There’s a photo on the Retrieverman page I linked of a known mix of these two dogs who is a dead ringer for Dahlia. I’ve been pretty convinced for a long time now that this is what her mix is. And it seems many people agree something along that line is likely.
Enter The Wisdom Panel Test. Sending the test kit off is easy. We swabbed Dahlia’s cheek with the two swabs provided, let them air dry as instructed, and then put them back in the mailer, sealed it up and sent it off. It went out on Saturday, January 25 and we received our report via e-mail on February 5.
So what is she? Well, according to the test, on one side she’s a mix of Labrador Retriever and Italian Greyhound. No, really, Italian Greyhound. For those who don’t know much about them, they look like this:
They weigh approximately 8 to 18 pounds. Are you laughing yet?
Ok so that’s one side. On the other she was evaluated as being so mixed they couldn’t really sort out what might be there. But they did make several suggestions they found “traces” of:
Anatolian Shepherd (a large livestock guardian, weighs 80-150 pounds)
Great Pyrenees (another large livestock guardian; weighs 85-130 pounds)
Glen of Imaal terrier (a scruffy little terrier, fairly rare breed; weighs 30-35 pounds)
Bichon Frise (a fuzzy white lapdog; weighs 10-20 pounds)
English Springer Spaniel (a medium-sized gun dog; weighs 35-55 pounds; at least one of the dogs on the list weighs around what Dahlia weighs)
Some years back, Team Unruly member Kelsey had her dog Lucy tested by the same company. For those who don’t remember Lucy, she’s this lovely muppet of a dog.
Like Dahlia, Lucy is a shelter mutt of unknown origin. She weighs about 60 pounds and her mix is entirely unknown. Most guesses about her breed include Airedale Terrier, Doberman/Poodle mix, Schnauzer, and German Wire-Haired pointer.
So what did her Wisdom Panel come up with? It said that the most prominent breeds in her were Malamute and Miniature Bull Terrier. Go ahead, scroll back up to her picture and just think about that.
Conclusion: A big thumbs down from the Team Unruly quarter. Inaccurate at best. A total scam at worst.