How do I take a DNA sample from my dog?

Collecting DNA from your dog is easier than you may think! We have made this process as simple as possible for both you and your dog. All you will need is an ordinary cotton tip to collect some cheek cells, and a paper envelope for sending it back to us. Some dogs have more mouth than others, but even smaller cheeks will give us enough cells if you swab using the recommended method.

Make sure that your dog has not had anything to eat for at least 30 minutes before taking the sample. Use a clean and dry cotton tip that hasn’t come into contact with any other dogs. Place the tip into your dog’s mouth and roll it around with a back-and-forth motion using gentle pressure on the inside of the cheeks and gums. Keep doing this for 30-60 seconds. Flip the cotton tip over and repeat using the other end.

It is important to air dry the cotton tip for at least 10 minutes before sealing it in the envelope. After drying pop it straight into the envelope – do not seal it in a plastic bag. This minimises bacterial contamination and gives us the best chance of getting good quality DNA. The sooner we receive the swab the better, so mail it to us the same day as collection via express post.

If you are swabbing multiple dogs make sure to wash your hands between each dog. This will help prevent DNA transferring from one dog to the next. Also ensure that each dog’s sample is placed in a separate clearly labelled envelope.




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