Do you think my dog has wolf blood in her (DNA testing)

  • Thread starter Pleonasm
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  • #36
BillTre
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actual wolf blood
Your use of the term "wolf blood" in a scientific forum is going to repeatedly going to run into problems because the first thing someone is going to think of is acutal blood.
What you seem to intend to discuss however is the inheritance of the dog-wolf hybrid from the wolf.
By using the term "wolf blood" you have created misdirection.

The DNA structure of a given animal is constituted by blood.
This is not a good way to discuss this.
Even if you are taking the term "wolf blood" to mean inheritance in the genetic sense,
a person, novice to genetics, might take the statement literally and try to change their dog's genetics by transfusing wolf blood into them.

The only reasonable interpretation is inheritance or
Recent cross-breeding or ancestry.

A first generation hybrid (50% wolf derived DNA) should be expected to be detectable by even a simple DNA test, if it is directed at answering that question.
Better quality (more sensitive tests, covering more genetic markers, directed to a more specific question) would cost more.
Complete sequencing of the genome combined with a competent analysis would be the ideal, but more expensive.
Crosses among 50% hybrid wolf-dogs would yield animals that would be (on average!) 50% wolf.
Crosses to pure non-dogs would reduce (on average!) reduce the % wolf DNA by .5; thus 50% would become 35% the next generation and 25% would be come 12.5% (on average). These are only averages due to variability in how much DNA from either grandparent is packaged into the particular gametes that become the zygote.
Crossing to a wolf each generation would do the opposite.

If it's hard to distinguish wolf DNA from dogs, how in the world do they genetically distinguish different dog breeds from each other?
It has to do with how detailed the test is and how carefully it is analyzed.
There have been studies on the lineages of different dog strains. They probably used a lot of markers, perhaps complete genome sequences. These tests would be more expensive and difficult than a home kit.
Examples going the other way, but from a slightly different field, include the many "species" of morphologically similar appearing animals (or plants?) that DNA analysis reveals to be separate species.

To sum up some of the above arguments:
Trying to make genetic arguments based only on a handful of behavioral traits is an approach that is compromised by its many potential confounding factors (individual genetic variation, individual upbringing, variation among strains).
Too many uncontrolled factors with too few cases to tease everything apart.
 
  • #37
Pleonasm
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To sum up some of the above arguments:
Trying to make genetic arguments based only on a handful of behavioral traits is an approach that is compromised by its many potential confounding factors (individual genetic variation, individual upbringing, variation among strains).
Too many uncontrolled factors with too few cases to tease everything apart.

That's why I consulted prolific breeders of both breeds. The attributes described were completely foreign to them, in any litter of puppies they've had for decades. Add to that sharp breeds being afraid when mine snaps.. Ask any farmer how their dog responds to a wolf and it is consistent with this. I had a pitbull/rotweiller breed that growled like a monster, until mine jumped it. No damage done that time.
 
  • #38
Pleonasm
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When I just got her home as a puppy she never cried, never cuddled. Complete absence of dog behavior. No separation anxiety.

Does not even adress me when I come home unless she's bored.

Malamutes are not like this. They are a quite affectionate to their owner and generally hate being alone and howl
 
  • #39
Pleonasm
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Is it possible that I have a Malamute/Golden mix that is just one tough, independent cookie? I guess.. But if you look at it cumulatively, it's highly suspect, and a DNA test is warranted.
 
  • #40
DennisN
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Your dog shares genes with yeast.
Which must mean that I share genes with yeast.
Now I finally understand why mom told me to use deodorant.
 
  • #41
Pleonasm
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Now the DNA test available, as far as I understand, is a basic saliva package test and shipment to a lab. Do I need to report for them to search for recent wolf ancestry specifically?
 
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  • #42
Pleonasm
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  • #43
256bits
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When I just got her home as a puppy she never cried, never cuddled. Complete absence of dog behavior. No separation anxiety.

Does not even adress me when I come home unless she's bored.

Malamutes are not like this. They are a quite affectionate to their owner and generally hate being alone and howl
Behaviorial difference than the general population!
What about her siblings - same behavior?

Whose the alpha in the family - you or her.
( Of course you will say you - ask her ? and you may get a different answer )

I would consult with a dog trainer before breeders.
Breeders sell a product, and show bias.
 
  • #44
Pleonasm
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Behaviorial difference than the general population!
What about her siblings - same behavior?

Whose the alpha in the family - you or her.
( Of course you will say you - ask her ? and you may get a different answer )

I would consult with a dog trainer before breeders.
Breeders sell a product, and show bias.
What does my leadership have to do with her innate independence? Dog trainers have very limited experiences with Alaskan Malamutes.
 
  • #45
256bits
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What does my leadership have to do with her innate independence? Dog trainers have very limited experiences with Alaskan Malamutes.
Your dog and you are in a pack, even if it is a pack of two, and
Who is the leader - you or the dog? in a particular situation.
That;s the question I was posing.
What picked that for me is that she does not address you when you come home.
She might be waiting for you to show your allegiance, hence the aloofness.

And by trainer, I do not mean one that gets here to fetch a ball and do trick and jump hoops, but one that show her who is the boss.
Boss is fluidic, depending upon the scenario.
She wants to play, you don't, but play anyways - she's the boss in this situation. She'll ask and want the same next time.
She wants to sit on her best end of the couch and you let her, she's the boss in that situation. She'll want the same next time.
Etc. etc.
No such thing as an alpha dog in all situations.
You probably already may know all that.

This probably explains it all in good fashion.
Ultimate and absolute alpha dog is probably a myth the way many people have transferred the actions of wild animals to domestic.

If you do a DNA test, and do find that she has wolf "blood", then what.
Not so sure about the send away kits as being 100% reliable anyways.
http://news.vin.com/vinnews.aspx?articleId=23206
That's from 2012. How much improvement since then I have no clue.
Some errors do crop in, as it is not exact.
Malamute has to be in their data base to show up.
And wolf also.
 
  • #46
Pleonasm
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From her experience, Roberts would not recommend DNA testing to determine breed. “I don’t think the test really tells us anything more than we can tell just by looking at the dog and making a guess,” she said. “Since I got different results even with the same company, it makes me pretty skeptical.”

Interesting..
 
  • #47
BillTre
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Do I need to report for them to search for recent wolf ancestry specifically?
If you do choose to try a DNA typing process, it would probably benefit you to contact the company.
Ask in detail what they test for.
Ask then specifically about what you are interested in finding out. You may find they can be more specific or focused in the process they use and how they analyze the results. It may cost more however.
 
  • #48
romsofia
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This brings back memories of when I was a kid and had two malamute/german shepard mix. You should have read more into the breed because these dogs are very aggressive towards other dogs.My sister had the more aggressive one and he would ALWAYS fight a dog once, but once he won he'd usually not bother that dog again. Through the 10 years I had him and his brother, the more aggressive one had the brother hospitalized twice... and I never saw him lose a fight either, even as he got older. Some dogs are just meaner than others. It's good you recognize this in your dog as well! We would never bring him to any social events with other dogs (no dog parks for sure), because we knew he would want to fight at some point. Walks were fine.

However, when I was younger, I thought of them as wolfdogs as well, because they would hunt like a pack (we added a golden retriever later on, and after they killed something, the golden would carry it back to us). They even got into a fight with a porcupine once, though I think they lost because both of them came back with their snouts filled with the needles. My parents did well with the "alpha" one because they were never human aggressive, but towards other animals they'd always make sure they got their way.

And to this day, I'd like to think they were wolfdogs! Even if my logic says they probably weren't (after reading about malamutes). I think at the end of the day, believe what you want! Your dog being a wolfdog or not really doesn't matter, just show them love and affection because they aren't on this planet for long!
 
  • #49
Pleonasm
322
19
This brings back memories of when I was a kid and had two malamute/german shepard mix. You should have read more into the breed because these dogs are very aggressive towards other dogs.My sister had the more aggressive one and he would ALWAYS fight a dog once, but once he won he'd usually not bother that dog again. Through the 10 years I had him and his brother, the more aggressive one had the brother hospitalized twice... and I never saw him lose a fight either, even as he got older. Some dogs are just meaner than others. It's good you recognize this in your dog as well! We would never bring him to any social events with other dogs (no dog parks for sure), because we knew he would want to fight at some point. Walks were fine.

However, when I was younger, I thought of them as wolfdogs as well, because they would hunt like a pack (we added a golden retriever later on, and after they killed something, the golden would carry it back to us). They even got into a fight with a porcupine once, though I think they lost because both of them came back with their snouts filled with the needles. My parents did well with the "alpha" one because they were never human aggressive, but towards other animals they'd always make sure they got their way.

And to this day, I'd like to think they were wolfdogs! Even if my logic says they probably weren't (after reading about malamutes). I think at the end of the day, believe what you want! Your dog being a wolfdog or not really doesn't matter, just show them love and affection because they aren't on this planet for long!

Probably the German Shepherd in it, not the Mal. GSD tend to be very dog aggressive.
 
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  • #50
MidgetDwarf
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It can be that you're dog does not respect you in the master/servant relationship. Maybe you did not socialize the dog adequately , or did not properly train it. Maybe you are trying to socialize it, in a manner that can be too overly stimulating to the dog. I have been training dogs since I could remember. My father grew up on a farm, and always kept a few dogs, mostly German Shepards. Dogs are like children, they each have their own distinct personality. Some breeds are known for common characteristics and behavior patterns. However, this is not the end all be all.

My favorite dog I had the pleasure of owning was a German Shepard named Xochitl. The dog was not affectionate at all, it lived with 3 other dogs, and never once played with the others. The only interaction she would have with the others, was correcting their behavior she deemed inappropriate by the other dogs. I could walk her without a leash, listened on command, and was a joy to play with. She would sit by feet while I would be reading, pretending she did not want to be petted only to smile sing. This was the only affection she portrayed towards me. But she would only allow me to walk her, groom her, and feed her. Best dog I ever had.

Some dogs just dislike certain things, just like humans do. That is ok. Unless the behavior is hazardous towards you're well being and the well being of others...
 
  • #51
romsofia
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Probably the German Shepherd in it, not the Mal. GSD tend to be very dog aggressive.

I'm sorry, but you're fooling yourself if you think Alaskian Malamutes aren't aggressive. They're cities in the US that have restrictions on them, they've killed 7 less people than German Shepard (Just so we're clear, the number is 12 vs 19), while not even comparing to the popularity of them, and finally they're an insurance risk (as in some insurance companies won't even cover your home if you own one). Now, what does this tell you about the Malamute?

You can sit there and keep lying to yourself that the dog you have in front of you is suppose to be fluffy, nice and not aggressive or you can accept reality, read up on their behavior, and train your dog accordingly.
 
  • #52
MidgetDwarf
1,395
550
I'm sorry, but you're fooling yourself if you think Alaskian Malamutes aren't aggressive. They're cities in the US that have restrictions on them, they've killed 7 less people than German Shepard (Just so we're clear, the number is 12 vs 19), while not even comparing to the popularity of them, and finally they're an insurance risk (as in some insurance companies won't even cover your home if you own one). Now, what does this tell you about the Malamute?

You can sit there and keep lying to yourself that the dog you have in front of you is suppose to be fluffy, nice and not aggressive or you can accept reality, read up on their behavior, and train your dog accordingly.

Not to familiar with these type of dogs. Never really cared for them. However, I am skeptical about claims of dog attacks. Certain dogs require more physical activity than others. Ie., a Labrador, German Shepard, Great Dane vs Chihuahua, poodle, insert tiny dog here. Americans are known to be couch potatoes...
Yes, some dogs require more expertise to properly nurture and train them, but it is not ok to put a blanket statement over XYZ dog breed.

Not really the animals fault if they get an incompetant owner...
It amazes me how I have seen many people with Huskies, and the owners have no clue...
 
  • #53
Pleonasm
322
19
I'm sorry, but you're fooling yourself if you think Alaskian Malamutes aren't aggressive. They're cities in the US that have restrictions on them, they've killed 7 less people than German Shepard (Just so we're clear, the number is 12 vs 19), while not even comparing to the popularity of them, and finally they're an insurance risk (as in some insurance companies won't even cover your home if you own one).

Source.. .
 
  • #54
Pleonasm
322
19
It can be that you're dog does not respect you in the master/servant relationship. ...

What are you talking about? They're supposed to be self reliant. And there is no requirement for the dog to say hello to me. It has nothing to do with leadership.
 
  • #55
Pleonasm
322
19
they've killed 7 less people than German Shepard (Just so we're clear, the number is 12 vs 19),

Are you talking about babies/infants? Golden Retrievers have killed those too. It says nothing about the breed.
 
  • #56
Pleonasm
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Btw, a working line German Shepherd, you know those that are supposed to "mentally stable" , snapped at me in a dog park, and bit my shoulder out of left field. My dog was not attentitive to what transpired, but if she would have been, and the attack would have been prolonged, that GSD would have been killed.
 

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