Contest Results – What’s in a Trout?

Last month, I opened up a competition to guess Trout’s breed. The results are in, and according to the Wisdom Panel, her DNA shares certain genetic markers with the DNA of Harriers (a type of scenthound) and Irish Terriers (a medium-sized terrier).


While I doubt there are many purebred Harriers and Irish Terriers breeding indiscriminately in rural Missouri, where she came from, the results make quite a bit of sense when we take a broader view of them. In fact, it’s very likely that a hound-type dog and a terrier-type dog both feature strongly in her ancestry.

While no one guessed this exact breed mix, many of you guessed that she was a Terrier/Hound cross. Congratulations to Susan Garriques, who was the first person to guess this combination. Susan will receive a $25 gift certificate to Dogwise (Susan, email me – sara at paws4u dot com – and I’ll send you a .PDF with your gift card information).


Next week, we’ll discuss the role breed has to play in behavior. We’ll also talk about ways in which focusing on your dog’s breed could be detrimental to your dog’s training.

In the meantime, though, I’d like to hear from you! If you have a purebred or known mix, how does your dog’s breed influence your training decisions? If you have a mixed breed, what breeds do you believe make up your dog’s ancestry? If you’ve done the Wisdom Panel for your dog, what did you think about your dog’s results? Please share your thoughts n the comments below! I’m really looking forward to the discussion.

7 responses to “Contest Results – What’s in a Trout?

  1. I think it would be interesting to know what my 2 dogs are made from… where did you go for the DNA testing?

  2. We’ve done it with three of our rescue and shelter dogs. In each case the results were reasonable and even correctly guessed (in part…). It’s helped to give a frame of reference and respect for certain behaviors they display. It doesn’t change or veto training, but understanding the dog’s makeup seems to make me more patient.

    I ordered the kits on Amazon and there’s a kit waiting in the cupboard for the newest adoptee. The process is easy, the wait for a response is about three weeks. I did the first two as a Fathers Day surprise gift for my husband and it was a hit.

  3. We adopted a pup from a rescue group Easter Sunday last year the Mom dog looked like a brindled boxer type all the pups were so hairy and fluffy. The wonderful lady who fostered and raised the 8 pups and mom from birth also adopted one of the pups. She had her pup DNA tested by the Wisdom panal as well as one other dna testing company. Both test came back the exact same (proof they work) The Mother dog was an American Staffordshire / Keeshond mix and The Daddy was a pure bred Standard Poodle. Our pup Kozmo looks exactly like a Italiano Spinone dog. We call him our Hairy Pit! Would love so share you his photo.

  4. The rescue for my dog Freyja represented her as a 3 year old boxer mix. After having her for a couple months, she grew another 15 pounds of muscle, so I had a DNA test done.
    The results were interesting – 50% American Bulldog, 25% Bullmastiff, and only ~3% Boxer. Also, some Flat-Coated Retriever and Bull Terrier.
    Needless to say, while Freyja is a very loving dog, she isn’t what anyone would call “biddable”.
    Knowing Freyja came from a long history of working dogs made it easier to work with her.

  5. I don’t think knowing your dogs breeding affects your training, although knowing it may help with your expectations. I have had mixed breeds and pure bred dogs and the only thing I know for sure is that they are all different and knowing your dog’s personality is your best guide in training.

  6. I was told by the people we got Amadeus from that he is 1/2 GSD, 1/4 Lab, and 1/4 Rott (they had both parents, and mom was definitely a GSD, so I see no reason to not believe them). Mostly, I try to train him like an “Amadeus-dog”, with training that addresses the particular problems and joys we have together. Knowing his breed did help a bit – I knew to expect a large, strong dog; I had some expectation of him liking to work (although not the intensity); I wasn’t surprised the day he decided cows and birds are the COOLEST THINGS EVER; and I suspected hip problems rather than temperament problems when he balked at sitting as a puppy. I think that knowing your dog has some genetic predisposition for certain things (behaviourally and physically) can help you plan and anticipate, but those plans need to be tweaked or discarded to make sure that it is right for the actual dog in front of you, not the theoretical one you planned for.

  7. Pingback: Does Breed Matter? | Paws Abilities

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