Cat Ancestry DNA Test
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Cat Ancestry DNA Test: Learn More About Your Feline’s Lineage

Veterinarians.org Team

By

Medically reviewed by

Ivana Crnec, DVM

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cat ancestry dna test

The modern-day felines are descendants of random-bred cats and are mostly less than 100 years old. There are many random-bred cats worldwide. We can trace their ancestral lineage to 8 geographic regions: South Asia, East Asia, Arabian Sea, India, Mediterranean, Iran/Iraq, Egypt, and Western Europe. A cat ancestry test traces your cats descend from the 8 ancestral groups. After determining the ancestral origin, a comparison is made with 29 other cat breeds to determine similarities to any of these reference breeds.

Cats do not have a long history of development for specific traits like hunting, retrieving, and herding like dogs. Most mixed dogs are descendants of crosses between different breeds. Humans originally tamed wild cats to control vermin in settlements.

The modern-day cats were developed from these tamed random-breeding cat populations. Cat breeds are selected more for their appearance and not for their performance. Modern-day cats are developed from crosses between random-bred cats. They are not crosses between breed cats. A breed test traces your cat lineage, wild cats index and delivers reports on common physical traits of coat type, fur length, and coat color.

Why Establish Cat Ancestry with a DNA Test?

dna test for cat ancestry

One simple reason cat lovers and shelter owners examine the DNA of their animals is to determine what breed they are. After the genetic testing company receives a swab sample, DNA is extracted and processed through an extensive database of reference cat breeds. All matches are recorded, and pet parents get to discover the genetic makeup of their pets.

If your little furry friend is a direct relative of breed groups, a cat ancestry test will determine this relationship with great probability. This is an excellent reason to get your breed cats tested.

Cat DNA tests also reveal which genetic disease your pet might be susceptible to. For instance, in dog breeds, an Australian Shepherd might be predisposed to heart disease. Collie-type dog breeds might react negatively to certain drugs. Once you know your mixed dogs descend, it will inform you of the medications to stay clear of.

Feline DNA testing also helps to understand your pet characteristics. Will it get along well with children? How much exercise does it need?

The Science Behind the Cat Paternity Test

cat dna test for ancestry

Like human DNA testing services such as Ancestry and MyHeritage, cat DNA tests requires a cat’s cheek cell sample that is absolutely painless to collect. Cat owners only need to ensure their pet has not eaten anything for some hours. Otherwise, you might be sending more food samples than your pet saliva.

It is crucial to note that this DNA test does not look at your pet’s complete genome. Instead, it analyses a set of genetic markers. These markers vary depending on the type of test you choose and identify specific traits, breeds, genetic mutations, and genes. It is even more crucial to note that breed analysis can be inaccurate. They are primarily helpful to satisfy your breed and trait curiosity and not to solve a medical condition.

On the other hand, you might uncover some surprising results about your pet behavior. A study reported on Sciencemag.org revealed that dog personalities are linked to breed type and DNA. The study involved a survey of over 50,000 dog owners. It concluded that 15% of a dog’s personality depends on the dog breed.

So, if you plan to use a DNA test for breed identification, you might also discover some interesting things about your feline friend’s personality.

How to Test a Cat’s Paternity

A cat’s paternity test also identifies your cat’s breed history, country of origin, genetic disease risk, wild cat relatives, and guesses at her coat type and coloring.

Using a swab provided by the DNA testing company, insert it into your cat’s mouth for three seconds or more. Do your best to collect as much saliva sample as possible, then send it back to the testing company.

Cat DNA tests work by extracting the DNA samples, performing a cat’s genetic similarity test using some assays, and screening against certain genetic markers. However, the DNA testing companies do not provide much info other than that, unlike in a human DNA test.

In two to six weeks, you will receive a detailed report via email containing valuable information about your cat’s genetics.

How Accurate are the Results of a DNA cat Ancestry Test?

cat ancestry test using their dna

Sending a swab sample is the first step to unraveling the genetic mystery about your pet. DNA extraction and reading the DNA is the second step in generating a cat ancestry test report. When it comes to screening for genetic markers (occupying hundreds of thousands of positions), the accuracy of the process is very high. DNA cat Ancestry Test has an accuracy of over 99 percent for the markers tested with the current technology.

Cat DNA Kits that Test Your Cat’s Ancestry

Basepaws DNA Test Kit

Basepaws Cat DNA Test Kit

Get it on Amazon

Cats are mysterious creatures. Why do cat purr? Why are they obsessed with petting? Where did they originate from? It’s hard work filing cat surveys because many pet owners rescue their cats nowadays. This translates to limited information about your cat, especially the breed and genetic history that remains a mystery.

Not anymore; the Basepaws cat DNA test can give you the answers that you seek. You may frown at the price tag of $129.99, but it is worth a price to pay for demystifying your random-bred inner secrets. Basepaws has the largest cat DNA database.

If you are unsure whether to DNA test your cat – consider what you and your pet stand to gain from the breed analysis report. The test can identify your cat’s breed composition and inform you if she is predisposed to certain genetic diseases, such as polycystic kidney disease. It also comes with a chromosome map and cat’s health recommendations to ensure your feline friend lives a healthy life for long. You will also discover the part of the world its ancestry lineage is linked to and your pet wild cat index.

The Basepaws cat DNA test results come back in about six weeks after sending a swab sample to the lab. To get a saliva sample, swab your cat’s cheek, store it properly in the provided storage back, and return it to the company. Demystify your cat’s genetic secrets by investing in Basepaws DNA Test Kit. This DNA kit will not only provide valuable information to answer your curiosity, but it will also provide the basis for creating a detailed health plan that ensures better care for your pet in the future.

Price

Basepaws cat DNA Test Kit, Breed + Health Report & Wildcat Index and 18 Cat Breeds & 38 Genetic Markers – $129.00

Wisdom Panel Cat Test Kit

Wisdom Panel Optimal Selection Feline

The more information you know about your cat, the better prepared you will be in providing the right type of care it needs to live a healthy life. While your cat can not sit down and narrates its characteristics and other thoughts, DNA can! Therefore, it is essential to go for the right type of DNA test kit to provide the answers you seek.

Wisdom Cat Test Kit is specially designed for cat breeders. It helps breeders to develop efficient breeding programs. You can still purchase this kit as a cat owner; it won’t just be as beneficial to you as it would, a breeder.

Wisdom Cat test kit requires a saliva swab to test for traits and diseases. The traits tested for include morphology, coat patterns, coat colors, coat types, blood type, and many more. It provides information about over 40 genetic diseases and 20+ genetic traits. Results take about 4 weeks after submitting a saliva swab.

Price

Optimal Selection™ Feline – $99.99

Orivet Cat DNA Test Kit

ORIVET Cat DNA Test Kit

Get it on Amazon

Unraveling the mystery of the genome led to some fascinating discoveries, from understanding the reason for blindness to creating unique genetic code in a computer system. Today, the genome has created an avenue to learn more about our world, including our pets. Orivet Cat DNA Testing Kit will reveal your cat’s ancestors and the future of your cat.

Carrying out this test is simple, place the provided swab in the mouth of your pet as instructed. Store it in the provided bag and mail it back in a pre-paid envelope to the cat DNA testing company. Results are usually ready within four weeks.

Orivet Cat DNA Test results are broken into four categories. A first that shows your pet’s unique mix of cat breeds is linked into the ancestry category, which shows ancestral lineage up to three generations. A health screening for a number of feline genetic diseases and traits informs you about the medical conditions your feline might develop in the future. All this comes together into a life plan.

Orivet Lifeplan is a science-guided schedule that will keep your cat healthy. It is personalized for your pet’s unique DNA mix. It is built in a way that you can share it with your vet. The Lifeplan feature considers potential risks and diseases and offers custom alerts and tools to keep you informed. You can set vet visit reminders, healthcare prompts, and many more while still proferring medical advice and disease screening suggestions. The Lifeplan feature serves as a digital record of your cat’s health. You will have everything in one place for easy accessibility, planning, and peace of mind.

Price

ORIVET Cat DNA Testing Kit – $84.45

Our Final Thoughts

“Curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought it back.” Being curious about your cat’s genetic secrets might save its life. If you’ve read this far, it means you have all the information required to choose the best DNA tests for your random-bred cats.

What’s left is to order a kit, send back a sample and wait for the results. Within four weeks, the detailed breakdown of your cat genetics will surely help you know more about your royal friend and help you build a deeper bond.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the DNA test accurate?

Just like any scientific test, cat DNA tests have a margin of error. However, cats’ evolution varies significantly from the history of dogs and that of humans. As such, using DNA test kits is a more reliable method to determine breed ancestry.

How much does ancestry DNA test cost?

This will depend on the brand you choose. A genetic testing kit for cats can cost $50 to over $100

How can I identify my cat breed?

The following are traits that can help determine the breed of mixed breed cats:

  • Face shape
  • Tail length
  • Fur pattern and color
  • Coat type
  • Fur length
  • Size

A good way to identify your feline is to check through the popular cat breeds to see if one is characterized by traits that match your pet’s behavior and appearance. Ultimately, the most accurate way to determine your cat’s breed is to carry out a feline DNA test.

How old should my cat be before doing a DNA test?

Age does is not a determining factor of anything when it comes to genetic testing. If you intend to submit a cat’s DNA sample from a nursing kitten, it is advisable to wait for at least an hour after nursing before taking a sample.

Where can I get a cat ancestry DNA test kit?

These cat ancestry genetic test kits are available online via resellers like Chewy, Amazon, or Petco. It doesn’t matter where you buy from; the processes are the same.

What good would a cat ancestry DNA test do?

A cat ancestry DNA test will provide you with valuable information about your cat breed regions, genetic variants, breed groups, and breed health. It also serves as a fun way to learn about your mixed-breed pet, diagnose potential genetic conditions, and discover ways to improve its health in general. If you are a cat breeder, a cat DNA test helps determine the carrier status of certain genetic conditions in your cats that future generations can inherit.