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General questions about Wisdom Panel® 2.0

About Wisdom Panel® 2.0 Swab Sample Collection

Questions about Breeds

Science Based Questions

About Mars Veterinary™, Mars, Incorporated and WALTHAM®

Questions And Answers

General questions about Wisdom Panel® 2.0

What is Wisdom Panel® 2.0?

Knowing your dog’s ancestry can help you create a tailored wellness program to fit their one-of-a-kind needs. Wisdom Panel® 2.0 is a simple DNA test that helps reveal the breeds in your dog’s ancestry. The test incorporates the ancestry analysis, as well as, the purebred and designer dog (first generation cross between two purebred dogs) tools previously found in the Wisdom Panel® Purebred and Wisdom Panel® Designer Dog tests. Therefore, you can answer a number of different questions with one simple kit.
If you think your dog is a mixed-breed, Wisdom Panel® 2.0 will analyze the DNA data using our computer program and breed database to identify the breed(s) present in their recent ancestry. If you think your dog is one or two specific breeds, you can indicate these during kit activation. The DNA sample will be analyzed with the breed identification computer program, as well as, examine the specific breed(s) you indicated to determine how closely your dog’s DNA profile matches.
In the case of a mixed-breed dog, your dog has inherited traits from his ancestors just like you did from your family. But, just like you don’t look exactly like your grandparents, the same is true for your loveable mutt. When you combine the DNA from different purebreds, you create a one-of-a-kind mixed-breed dog like yours. As it can be difficult to identify ancestral breeds by visual identification, using your dog’s DNA to determine the ancestral breeds is much more accurate.

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How does the Wisdom Panel® 2.0 report show a mixed-breed dog's results?

Wisdom Panel® 2.0 breaks down a dog’s lineage in the form of an ancestry tree. This allows you to see which breeds are present at a parent, grandparent, and great-grandparent level. Keep in mind that a parent contributes 50% of their DNA to the puppy while a grandparent contributes about 25% and great-grandparent approximately 12.5%.
Since each of these levels can contribute different amounts of DNA to the puppy, there are a variety of influences in the puppy’s physical and behavioral traits. With a parental breed, you are likely to see some physical and behavioral traits from this breed represented unless some of the genes are recessive (requires two copies of the gene variant to show it). Examples of recessive traits include longhair (in most breeds), a clear yellow or red hair coat, a brown or chocolate hair coat, and "prick" or upright ear set (e.g. like a German Shepherd Dog). You may see traits from breeds at the grandparent level and it becomes even less likely to see physical and behavioral traits from breeds at the great-grandparent level unless those traits are dominant (requires only one copy of the gene variant to show it). Examples of dominant traits include shorthair (in most breeds), black hair coat, black nose, a "drop" or down ear set (e.g. like a Beagle), and merle/dapple (e.g. like a Australian Shepherd or Great Dane).
Not only does the computer analyze a dog’s DNA for the breeds and their likely proportions in the dog’s ancestry, but it also models which side of the dog’s ancestry each breed is likely coming from.

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How does Wisdom Panel® work?

Testing your dog with Wisdom Panel® 2.0 begins when you use the cheek swabs to collect a DNA sample from inside your dog’s cheek and then send the swabs into the laboratory. Once your sample is received at our lab it is scanned into our database and assigned to a batch for testing. It then undergoes processing to extract the DNA from your dog’s cells which is examined for the 321 markers that are used in the test. The results of these markers are sent to a computer that evaluates them using a program designed to consider all of the pedigree trees that are possible in the last three generations. The trees considered include a simple pedigree with a single breed (a likely pure-bred dog), all the way up to a complex tree with eight different great-grandparent breeds allowed. Our computer uses information from our extensive breed database to fill these potential pedigrees.
For each of the millions of combinations of ancestry trees built and considered, the computer gives each a score representing how well that selected combination of breeds matched to your dog’s data. The pedigree with the overall best score is selected and provided to you in your dog’s individualized report. It normally takes 2-3 weeks from the time a sample is received for the genetic testing and analysis to be completed. For a detailed explanation on how your dog's test sample is analyzed, watch this informative video: From Mailbox to Inbox – The Journey of Fido’s DNA

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How do I use my Wisdom Panel® 2.0 kit to test my dog’s DNA?

Testing is as easy as 1-2-3.

 

  1. Simply collect a sample from the inside of your dog’s cheek with the included swabs.
  2. Using the provided "Test Sample ID", activate your kit online and mail the swabs back to our laboratory in the postage-paid envelope.
  3. Within about 3 weeks, you’ll receive an e-mailed ancestry report with your dog’s results.
 

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Where do I find the Sample ID # to check the status of my order?

Depending on your kit, the Sample ID# should be located on the top or bottom of your submission form or instruction sheet and is a 7 or 10-digit code.

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How can I track my Wisdom Panel® sample online?

You can track the progress of your sample online by visiting www.wisdompanel.com/test_status_checker and entering your Sample ID and Last Name in the required fields. Once this information has been provided you will be able to follow your sample’s progress via our Test Status Checker.

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Can Wisdom Panel® 2.0 certify a purebred or designer dog?

Yes. Wisdom Panel® 2.0 incorporates the ancestry analysis, as well as, the purebred and designer dog (first generation cross between two purebred dogs from different breeds) tools previously found in the Wisdom Panel® Purebred and Wisdom Panel® Designer Dog tests. Therefore, you can answer a number of different questions with one simple kit.
If you think your dog is a mixed-breed, Wisdom Panel® 2.0 will analyze the DNA data using our computer program and breed database to identify the breed(s) present in their recent ancestry. If you think your dog is one or two specific breeds, you can indicate these during kit activation and the DNA sample will be analyzed with the breed identification computer program, as well as, looking at the specific breed(s) you indicated to determine how closely your dog’s DNA profile matches. Note that the DNA profiles for some breeds may vary depending on the family line or specific geographic origin of that family line. For example, we have observed different DNA patterns for some purebred dogs in the US and the UK or Australia.

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How accurate is Wisdom Panel® 2.0?

At Mars Veterinary, we pride ourselves on offering the most reliable and accurate genetic tests on the market. Wisdom Panel® 2.0 provides the highest level of accuracy possible for a cheek swab DNA test, but that accuracy can vary depending on the quality of DNA collected by an owner from their dog. Because of the potential variation in DNA quality sent to our testing facilities, we are unable to provide a definitive accuracy percentage at this time.
To ensure that the Wisdom Panel® tests are as accurate as possible, Mars Veterinary has focused its research on the most important factors including:
1 – Genetic markers: These are the places of variation in a dog's genetic structure. By studying both the similarities and differences in these markers among different breeds, we are able to determine characteristic signatures. During Wisdom Panel® test development we completed over 19 million genetic marker analyses and typed over 13,000 dogs during test development. This is important because careful studies are needed in order to properly find the places of variation that make each breed unique. All of these calculations require a very advanced computer program that can analyze all of this data and identify the breeds in each dog.
2 – Numbers and types of dogs: This is the database we refer to that is used to compare your dog's DNA against other breeds. The more breeds, the better the test. Wisdom Panel® 2.0 tests for over 200 different breeds and varieties.
3 – Validation testing for accuracy: This includes repeated testing of a dog’s sample and review by independent third party specialists, geneticists, and leading authorities on canine genetics. In each stage of testing your dog's DNA, the Wisdom Panel® tests are run in a USDA accredited laboratory to ensure proper quality control.

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Has Wisdom Panel® been used to test the same dog more than once to see if results are the same?

Yes, we have used Wisdom Panel® to test many dogs more than once and we were able to detect when a second sample from the same dog is submitted. Our quality control work demonstrates that on each of the 321 genetic markers analyzed with the Wisdom Panel®, the average repeatability is over 99%. Due to subtle differences between run variations in the number of markers that are returned from our laboratory, there may, occasionally, be minor variation in the results reported, particularly at the trace amount level, though most breeds will be detected in common between repeat runs of the same sample.

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Can Wisdom Panel® 2.0 identify health issues or disease predispositions?

Wisdom Panel® 2.0 can determine the breed makeup of a dog. It is not designed to determine which disease traits—if any—might be present in a dog. The real value in this test is that with knowledge of your dog’s breed ancestry, you can work together with your veterinarian to develop a more targeted care plan for your dog and have a better understanding of their dog’s physical and behavioral traits. This one-time investment helps owners feel confident they are providing their dog with the best care possible.

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How long does it take to get Wisdom Panel® 2.0 results?

Once the sample has been received at the lab it generally takes 2-3 weeks for the sample to be tested, results generated and report available for download on our website. You will receive email notification when the report is available for download.

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Why doesn't my dog look like the breeds detected by the Wisdom Panel® 2.0?

Physical appearance is largely controlled by a small number of genes. These genes can have both recessive and dominant variants and the variants that are present determine the visible effect on physical traits seen. As a result the presence of various breed signatures does not guarantee that the dog will look like all detected breeds. The wonder of genetic inheritance can be seen as much in dogs as it can in people.

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Can puppies be tested with Wisdom Panel® 2.0?

Yes. Wisdom Panel® 2.0 is designed for dogs of all ages and is safe and easy to be used at any stage in a dog's development. However, we do recommend waiting until a puppy has been weaned to prevent cross-contamination from suckling on their mother and having cells from her skin and milk in their mouth at the time of swabbing.
Note that it can be very difficult to observe breed traits in puppies as they are growing and developing so much and they will not achieve their final mature physical traits until they are at least 1-2 years of age.

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What if I have a question about my Wisdom Panel® results?

Please contact us at 888-K9 PET TEST (1-888-597-3883) or fill out the contact us form, if you should have any questions regarding your results.

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Do the Wisdom Panel® 2.0 test results denote which parent is the mother and which is the father?

Wisdom Panel® 2.0 is not able to determine which parent is the mother and which is the father at this time.

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Will the Wisdom Panel® 2.0 test results allow me to register my dog with the AKC?

The Wisdom Panel® 2.0 test does not allow you to register your dog with the AKC. For information on how to register your dog with the American Kennel Club (AKC) please visit

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Does Wisdom Panel® 2.0 measure the purity of my purebred dog?

The Wisdom Panel® 2.0 test can be used to compare your dog genetically to known purebreds in a pre-specified breed to see how similar or dissimilar your dog is to members of that particular breed. However, the kennel clubs govern the definition of purity.

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Does Wisdom Panel® 2.0 provide proof of parentage?

Wisdom Panel® 2.0 does not provide parentage testing at this time.

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Can Wisdom Panel® 2.0 determine the sex of the dog tested?

Wisdom Panel® 2.0 is specifically designed to look for the combination of ancestral breed(s) in a dog utilizing the non-sex chromosomes, and therefore, it cannot determine the sex of a dog at this time.

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Is Mars Veterinary collecting samples of purebred dogs to add more breeds to the Wisdom Panel® tests?

Yes. If you have a purebred dog that is not part of the over 200 breeds that we currently cover, and would like to donate a small sample to help us add that breed to our database, please contact our customer care team at customercare@marsveterinary.com. We will send an information pack to enable you to send us a sample.

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Where did Mars Veterinary get the dog DNA samples used to develop the Wisdom Panel® tests and scientific studies?

The development of the Wisdom Panel® test included the analysis of more than 19 million DNA markers across more than 13,000 dogs. As a result, Wisdom Panel® 2.0 can identify over 200 breeds and varieties that may be present in a dog including all breeds registered with the American Kennel Club (AKC) at this time. The Wisdom Panel® tests are based on the most sophisticated and comprehensive genetic database for dogs available.

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About Wisdom Panel® 2.0 Swab Sample Collection

How do I collect a good DNA sample from my dog’s cheek?

Collecting a sample is as easy.
1. Quickly inspect your dog’s mouth between the cheek and gums for food debris.
2. Peel back the edges of the swab and avoid touching the bristles.
3. Firmly roll and rotate swab bristles against the inside of your dog’s cheek.
4. Allow sample to dry five minutes prior to putting the swab back into sleeve.

 

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How long after my dog has eaten and/or drank can I swab them?

Please wait approximately 2 hours after a meal or treat (drinking water is fine) to begin the DNA collection.

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How do I air dry the swab without contaminating it?

The swab will only become contaminated if it comes into contact with other dogs, people, or dirty surfaces. It should be dried while the swab bristles are in the air and not in contact with any surface. Both swabs should be air dried for five minutes and the reinserted into the protective sleeves provided so that the bristle brushes are completely covered. Very important! Do not reseal the sleeve as this can cause bacteria/fungus growth. Your dog’s swab samples should be shipped immediately and they can be shipped at normal room temperature. Please follow the instructions in your kit to mail the swabs in their pre-paid packaging.

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How long can I leave the swabs out before they become unusable?

The swabs should be placed back in their protective sleeves as soon as they have air dried. Both swabs only need five minutes to completely dry. Leaving them out in the air for longer than the recommended time should not damage the swabs, but may increase the possibility of contamination. Please keep in mind that the protective sleeves should not be resealed as this may cause bacteria/fungus growth to occur.

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How will I know if I have enough DNA on my swab?

Cheek cells will not necessarily be visible on the swabs. However, if you place the swab inside the dog’s cheek and firmly rub the swab around for about 15 seconds then there should be enough material transferred to the swab.

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How do I activate my dog’s sample?

Activate your dog’s sample at www.wisdompanel.com/start. This will allow immediate tracking of your sample as well as updates throughout the process of the test analysis. Please be sure to complete all the required fields.

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Where do I find the Sample ID # to activate my sample online?

Depending on your kit, the sample ID# should be located on the top or bottom of your submission form or instruction sheet. It is a 7 or 10 digit code.

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What if I have more than one dog in my home?

To ensure that a good swab sample is obtained it is best that your dog does not share water or food bowls with another dog for at least two hours prior to swabbing them.

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My dog destroyed one of the swabs, are both needed for the Wisdom Panel® 2.0 test?

Ideally, we would like to have both swabs in case there is not enough DNA material on one swab for us to test; however, only one swab is necessary to perform the analysis. If that swab fails the analysis, Mars Veterinary will contact you for a retest with an additional swab kit.

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My dog just died can I still do a Wisdom Panel® 2.0 test?

Taking a swab DNA sample from a deceased dog is not recommended, whatever the circumstance, as the quality of the DNA sample will likely be unusable for Wisdom Panel® 2.0 testing purposes.

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Questions about Breeds

Which breeds are detected by the Wisdom Panel® tests?

The Wisdom Panel® database covers over 200 different breeds. For a full list of breed detected, visit:

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Can Wisdom Panel® identify the breeds in a dog that was born outside the U.S.?

Wisdom Panel® was developed using genetic markers from American Kennel Club (AKC) breeds and some non-AKC breeds in the U.S., as well as, purebred dogs from the United Kingdom, Australia, and Europe. Through the course of our test development, we have observed that certain breeds sometimes have quite different genetic breed signatures in different geographical regions, particularly with comparison to the same breed in Europe or Australia. Due to these geographic variations, Wisdom Panel® is only offered in the appropriate geographical areas. We have also tested dogs from Mexico and the Caribbean, but these are performed on a case-by-case basis and the results may be difficult to interpret without the appropriate population information from those regions.
Before we can extend the Wisdom Panel® to new countries, we have to do quite a large amount of DNA research on the breeds from the new geographic locations. As quality is an important part of our work, we believe we need to do this before offering the test in new countries.
For more information, please contact us at customercare@marsveterinary.com.

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Does Wisdom Panel® test for “Pit-bull”?

The term "Pit-bull" is a bit of a misnomer and does not refer to a single, recognized breed of dog, but rather to a genetically diverse group of breeds which are associated by certain physical traits. Pit-bull-type dogs have historically been bred by combining guarding-type breeds with terriers for certain desired characteristics. As such they may retain many genetic similarities to their original breeds and other closely related breeds.
Due to the genetic diversity of this group, Mars Veterinary cannot build a DNA profile to genetically identify every dog that may be visually classified as a Pit-bull. When these types of dogs are tested with the Wisdom Panel®, we routinely detect various quantities of the component purebred dogs including the American Staffordshire Terrier, Boston Terrier, Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Mastiff, Bullmastiff, Boxer, Bulldog, and various other Terriers. Additionally, there are often other breeds outside of the Guard and Terrier groups identified in the mix depending on each dog’s individual ancestry.
Some local communities in the U.S. have put restrictions on Pit-bull ownership. Mars Veterinary encourages dog owners and care providers to be fully aware of their local laws, which vary across the country.

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Does Wisdom Panel® test for wolf or coyote?

The Wisdom Panel® tests were developed using genetic markers specific for the dog. These tests are not intended to test for wolf or coyote DNA.

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Can regulatory/animal control officials use the Wisdom Panel® to determine whether breeds are legislated or banned in a particular community?

Wisdom Panel® is designed and intended to be used solely to identify the breed history of a dog and no other purpose is authorized or permitted.
Wisdom Panel® is not intended to predict behavior in any particular dog. Each dog is unique and its physical and behavioral traits will be the result of multiple factors, including: genetics, training, handling and environment.

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Science Based Questions

Scientifically, how did we get to the point to where we can identify the breed makeup of a dog?

The Wisdom Panel® tests are the result of years of extensive research and draws on the expertise of scientists at the internationally respected Waltham® Centre for Pet Nutrition in the United Kingdom, along with leading veterinarians, universities and breed organizations throughout the world.
The Wisdom Panel® tests are based on three main factors:
1 – Genetic markers: These are the places of variation in a dog's genetic structure. By studying both the similarities and differences in these markers among different breeds, we are able to determine characteristic signatures. During Wisdom Panel® test development we completed over 19 million genetic marker analyses and typed over 13,000 dogs during test development. This is important because careful studies are needed in order to properly find the places of variation that make each breed unique. All of these calculations require a very advanced computer program that can analyze all of this data and identify the breeds in each dog.
2 – Numbers and types of dogs: This is the database we refer to that is used to compare your dog's DNA against other breeds. The more breeds, the better the test. Wisdom Panel® 2.0 tests for over 200 different breeds and varieties.
3 – Validation testing for accuracy: This includes repeated testing of a dog’s sample and review by independent third party specialists, geneticists, and leading authorities on canine genetics. In each stage of testing your dog's DNA, the Wisdom Panel® tests are run in a USDA accredited laboratory to ensure proper quality control.

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What happens to my Wisdom Panel® sample at the laboratory?

Once your sample is received at our lab it is scanned into our database and assigned to a batch for testing. It then undergoes processing to extract the DNA from your dog’s cells which is examined for the 321 markers that are used in the test. The results of these markers are sent to a computer that evaluates them using a program designed to consider all of the pedigree trees that are possible in the last three generations. The trees considered include a simple pedigree with a single breed (a likely pure-bred dog), all the way up to a complex tree with eight different great-grandparent breeds allowed. Our computer uses information from our extensive breed database to fill these potential pedigrees.
For each of the millions of combinations of ancestry trees built and considered, the computer gives each a score representing how well that selected combination of breeds matched to your dog’s data. The pedigree with the overall best score is selected and provided to you in your dog’s individualized report. It normally takes 2-3 weeks from the time a sample is received for the genetic testing and analysis to be completed. For a detailed explanation on how your dog's test sample is analyzed, watch this informative video: From Mailbox to Inbox – The Journey of Fido’s DNA

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Why can it take so long to process a Wisdom Panel® sample?

The Wisdom Panel® is one of the most advanced genetic analyses commercially available at this time. The full process to extract the DNA, identify your dog’s DNA markers, and analyze the results against the extensive Wisdom Panel® breed database is done in a very deliberate and careful manner that normally takes up to 2-3 weeks from the time a sample is received to be completed. For a full description of the process, please see FAQ "What happens to my sample at the laboratory?" For a detailed explanation on how your dog's test sample is analyzed, watch this informative video: From Mailbox to Inbox – The Journey of Fido’s DNA

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Is the Wisdom Panel® breed detection analysis at all similar to the kind of DNA analysis people can undergo to find out their ancestry? Does mitochondrial DNA or Y-chromosome DNA come into play in the analysis? How are the 321 genetic markers determined?

Wisdom Panel® has some technological similarities to the DNA analysis that people use to determine their ancestry but there are major differences in what each analysis is looking for. Wisdom Panel® is designed to detect the presence of purebred dogs in the most recent ancestry of a dog going back about three generations to the great-grandparent level. In contrast, most human ancestry tests are designed to detect the proportion of the tested individual that comes from historical, racial, or defined population groups many multiple generations ago.
Wisdom Panel® only uses what are called autosomal DNA markers, chromosomes that contain most of the genetic instructions for every canine’s body make up (height, weight, size etc.). There are no markers from either the so-called sex chromosomes (the canine X or Y chromosomes). Mitochondrial DNA, or Y-chromosome DNA testing, is rather different as these parts of the genome are passed on intact from mother to child and father to son respectively, but are therefore only representative of either the female or the male lineage. Autosomal DNA is inherited both from the maternal and paternal lineages equally and constantly shuffled by a process called recombination at each successive generation, and therefore is able to give more useful information on the breeds found on both sides of a dog’s lineage.
To find the genetic markers that performed best at distinguishing between breeds, Mars Veterinary tested over 4,600 SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms or genetic markers, where genetic variation has been found between different dogs), from positions across the entire canine autosomal genome from over 3,200 dogs. To further refine the search, Mars Veterinary determined the best 1,536 genetic variations and ran them against an additional 4,400 dogs from a wide range of breeds. This stage of testing resulted in the selection of a final panel of DNA markers that performed best at distinguishing between breeds, ultimately creating the Wisdom Panel® genetic database. This database presently covers over 200 different breeds.

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Do breed signatures differ from commonly understood notions of recessive and dominant genes? That is, it seems that the presence of a breed signature doesn't necessarily imply a physical appearance?

Physical appearance (predominantly determined by genes that influence the development of canine size and body mass, coat length, type and color, skull shape, leg length, ear and tail types), is known to be controlled by a very small number of genes relative to the overall number of genes contained in the canine genome (~20,000 or so in total). These genes can have both recessive and dominant variants and the variant(s) present determines the visible effect on physical traits seen. The presence of breed signatures does not guarantee that the dog will look like all detected breeds.

The Wisdom Panel® breed signatures are defined by markers that are consistent with the presence of a particular breed in the background of a tested dog, but were not chosen to specifically cover the genes responsible for specific trait determination from those breeds—many parts of the genome are likely to be unobservable with regard to trait determination. This can happen for any number of trait-determining genes. Therefore, a mixed-breed dog could be a mix of three or four breeds but have few traits evident from one or more of these breeds. There are two good examples of how this can happen. The first is eye color in humans.

Brown is dominant over blue and green, and yet, a brown-eyed mother can have a green-eyed son if the dominant brown eye color variant is not passed on. The second, and perhaps best, illustration of the surprising affects you may see when mixing breeds is to study some designer dogs (e.g. puggles, cockapoos, labradoodles, etc.)—a custom combination of two different pure breeds. Often these dogs will look quite different to the founder breeds because they are a mixture of two very different sets of genetic backgrounds. Equally many dog breeds still contain a variety of genetic variants for specific trait genes, especially coat color, size and coat type. For example, there are many different forms of Schnauzers such as miniature, standard and giant, and there are many different coat colors and coat types found in the Dachshund breed such as wire, smooth, and long-haired. Dogs can be many different colors and yet are still classified as the same breed.

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I don’t think my dog looks like the breeds detected in the Wisdom Panel® analysis. Can you help me understand this?

Many parts of the canine genome are likely to be unobservable or hidden with regard to trait determination. This can happen for any number of trait-determining genes. Simply put, a mixed-breed dog could be a mix of 3 or 4 breeds but have few traits evident from one or more of these breeds. There are two good examples of how this can happen. The first is eye color in humans.
Brown is dominant over blue and green, and yet, a brown-eyed mother can have a green-eyed son if the dominant brown eye color variant is not passed on. The second, and perhaps best, illustration of the surprising affects you may see when mixing breeds is to study some designer dogs (e.g. puggles, cockapoos, labradoodles, etc.)—a custom combination of two different pure breeds. Often these dogs will look quite different to the founder breeds because they are a mixture of two very different sets of genetic backgrounds. Equally many dog breeds still contain a variety of genetic variants for specific trait genes, especially coat color, size and coat type. For example, there are many different forms of Schnauzers such as miniature, standard and giant, and there are many different coat colors and coat types found in the Dachshund breed such as wire, smooth, and long-haired. Dogs can be many different colors and yet are still classified as the same breed.

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How does Wisdom Panel® analyze a dog’s DNA data to make a final breed determination?

All breed determinations are made by our proprietary computer algorithm. With each tested dog’s DNA, more than 7 million repetitive comparisons are made using a complex statistical algorithm. This algorithm scans the 321 genetic markers collected and looks for matches to breed signatures. It provides a marker by marker certainty score for each breed match. The computer then selects the single best combination of breeds and relative amounts of breeds detected that best match the tested DNA sample from this comparison with our extensive database of purebred signatures.

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Many dog breeds are derived from other, older breeds. Could Wisdom Panel® sometimes mistakenly detect some of the originating breeds instead of the newer AKC recognized breed?

Some breeds are relatively new; created from mixing other breeds together within the last few decades. When this happens, some ancestral similarities may remain in certain chromosomal regions. This makes it possible to have breeds that have been combined and ultimately formed a new breed to potentially be detected as matches at certain markers in the Wisdom Panel®. If this occurs, this would most likely be reported as trace amounts of the ancestrally related breeds.

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Certain breeds have their ears cropped, tails docked, and their dew claws removed. Although this is a breed standard, why do your test results not show the both the breed standard and the un-docked/cropped/etc. version to help owners better understand the make-up of their pet?

Mars Veterinary follows the guidelines of the American Kennel Club (AKC) in its breed identification. As such, the AKC recognizes that ear cropping, tail docking, and dewclaw removal, as described in certain breed standards, are acceptable practices integral to defining and preserving breed character and/or enhancing good health. This is why we have chosen to represent dogs in this way in our test results report. We recognize that dogs have many differentiating features. Our intent is to capture the most readily recognized and widely understood attributes in our results reporting. We encourage pet owners to submit photos of their dogs to our Dog Community Center to illustrate the interesting variations to the standard. You can find the full list of dogs that are cropped, docked or declawed on the AKC website.

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Are the Wisdom Panel® tests FDA approved?”

At this time, the FDA does not regulate genetic tests for companion animals so there was no federal requirement for FDA approval on Wisdom Panel® tests.
However, all Wisdom Panel® testing is run in a USDA accredited laboratory to ensure proper quality control. Additionally, throughout the ongoing development of our canine genetic science, we are continuously peer-reviewed and audited by an independent body of experts that comprise leaders in their respective fields. Mars Veterinary continues to work with them to ensure world-class science is delivered.

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What would happen if a dog has a breed not presently covered by the Wisdom Panel® database?

The Wisdom Panel® is designed to find the best matches to over 200 breeds in our database including all AKC recognized breeds. Occasionally there may be a breed that is not presently covered by the Wisdom Panel® database in which case, the results will depend upon the genetic relatedness of the tested dog to the breeds available in our database. For example, a Dutch Shepherd (closely related genetically to the Belgian Shepherd dog but not covered by the Wisdom Panel®) might result in a report that contains some amount of Belgian Shepherd dog.

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About Mars Veterinary™, Mars, Incorporated and WALTHAM®

Who is Mars Veterinary?

Mars Veterinary is a division of Mars, Incorporated, a company known for innovative consumer and pet food brands that are trusted by people around the world. Its mission is to facilitate responsible pet care by enlightening pet owners and communities with valuable insights into their pets as individuals through innovative, science-based discoveries.
For nearly a decade, Mars Veterinary has researched and developed state-of-the-art genetic tests for dogs, revolutionizing personalized pet care. By better understanding a dog’s ancestry, pet owners and veterinarians can work together to tailor wellness programs that fit the one-of-a-kind needs of each dog.

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Why is Mars, Incorporated involved in canine genetics?

Mars, Incorporated, a company known for innovative consumer and pet food brands that are trusted by people around the world, has been deeply involved with canine genetics for many years. As one of the largest pet food manufacturers in the world, Mars, Incorporated has consistently provided innovation in products that meet the needs of pets and owners.

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When were the Wisdom Panel® dog DNA tests launched?

The Wisdom Panel® dog DNA test was first launched in 2007 with Wisdom Panel® MX, a blood-based test administered by veterinarians. Additional genetic disease screens were added to the test and launched in the veterinary market as Wisdom Panel® Professional in 2009 along with a cheek swab based test called Wisdom Panel® Insights. In 2011, the researchers at Mars Veterinary developed additional tools to answer specific questions about purebred and first-generation crossbred dogs which were included in Wisdom Panel® Purebred and Wisdom Panel® Designer Dog. We were very excited in 2013 to launch Wisdom Panel® 2.0 which has combined all the aspects of our mixed and purebred tests into a single, convenient test. Wisdom Panel® 2.0 is available for purchase online at www.wisdompanel.com.
 
For those interested in running the professional, blood version of the DNA test, this test is performed with your veterinarian. The test is available through our professional partners, Royal Canin® and Banfield® Pet Hospitals. You can visit their respective sites, www.royalcaninGHA.com and www.banfield.com to find a vet near you that carries the professional version of the test.

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What is the relationship between Mars Veterinary and WALTHAM®?

Mars Veterinary draws on work carried out at the Waltham® Centre for Pet Nutrition, the world’s leading authority on pet care and nutrition, as well as the expertise of respected veterinarians, universities and breed organizations throughout the world.
Located in rural Leicestershire, England, the renowned Waltham Centre for Pet Nutrition has been a leading scientific authority in pet nutrition and well-being, advancing the frontiers of humane scientific research into the nutrition and healthy longevity of companion animals for over 30 years.
Their state-of-the art research program focuses on the nutritional and behavioral needs of companion animals and develops products which meet these needs in a practical way. It is Waltham that provides the science behind world-leading Mars pet care companies. Waltham has a leading reputation among pet owners, breeders, veterinarians and academics alike.

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