Dog breeds are more complex than many people realize, according to Halie Rando, an assistant professor of computer science at Smith College who led research on the topic. While a dog’s genetics can be matched to a specific breed, widely accepted breed definitions were established before the advent of DNA analysis. This can sometimes lead to genetic testing results contradicting the pet owner’s assumptions about their dog’s breed.

A recent study of 459 dogs from shelters in Arizona and California revealed that there were 125 different breeds, five percent of which were purebreds. Surprisingly, neither scientists nor experienced shelter workers were able to accurately identify mixed-breed dogs, which made up the majority of dogs in the study. Mixed breeds can be especially challenging when it comes to DNA testing, as the accuracy of test results relies on the genetic information available for identifiable breeds.

Consumers should thoroughly research DNA testing companies before submitting a sample, as the accuracy of results can vary depending on the diversity of the company’s genetic panel. Even if you get information about your dog’s breed, it may not have a significant impact on their behavior. A genetic analysis of over 2,000 purebred and mixed-breed dogs showed that behavior is more closely related to the individual dog than to its breed, emphasizing that breed is not a reliable predictor of behavior.

By Samantha Johnson

As a dedicated content writer at, I immerse myself in the art of storytelling through words. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for crafting engaging narratives, I strive to captivate our audience with each piece I create. Whether I'm covering breaking news, delving into feature articles, or exploring thought-provoking editorials, my goal remains constant: to inform, entertain, and inspire through the power of writing. Join me on this journalistic journey as we navigate through the ever-evolving media landscape together.

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