In California, one-fourth of dogs that end up in animal shelters appear to be Chihuahuas. These similar-looking dogs have a tough time getting adopted, since prospective pet parents are typically underwhelmed by their lack of distinctive characteristics. According to The Associated Press, however, shelters are looking to change this through DNA testing.
According to a press release, Scott Deluchi, senior vice president of the Bay Area’s Peninsula Humane Society, came up with the idea of DNA testing after noticing the low numbers of Chihuahua-like dogs being adopted. His slogan, “Who’s your daddy?” encourages potential pet owners to pay $50 for an accurate DNA exam that reveals what mix of breeds their prospective dogs are. It turns out that many homeless Chihuahuas are more than meets the eye. Often, this makes the mixed pooches much more desirable, and even earns them creative nicknames. Long gone are the days of simply tossing around the term “mutt.” Today’s dog owners want their furry friends to stand out. For example, a golden retriever-miniature pinscher-Chihuahua mix was marketed as a “golden Chinscher,” earning it much more attention.
The shelter tested 12 dogs in a preliminary trial run to see how effective DNA examinations would be in terms of actually placing the dogs in loving homes. After discovering the unique mixed backgrounds of 11 dogs and advertising them as such, the animals were all adopted within two weeks. This process was twice as fast compared to similar-looking dogs with uncertain backgrounds.
DNA tests reveal important pet information
Not only do pet owners want to be able to proudly boast their dogs’ breeds, but the source explained that knowing exactly what types of animals they’re acquiring makes people far more comfortable opening their doors to shelter dogs. Since different types of dogs have different dispositions and personality traits, puppy parents can know exactly what to expect as their pooches mature and develop. The source reported that California resident Lynn Mazzola was planning to take home a large dog when she visited Deluchi’s shelter, but the term “Chorkie” caught her eye. She ended up leaving with Lily, her new Chihuahua-Yorkie mix. She told The Associated Press that the unique combination of personality traits from the two breeds makes Lily the ideal pet. If Mazzola hadn’t been aware of the dog’s Yorkie side, however, she likely would’ve overlooked her new furry friend.
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