By Nan Talleno

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – In the past, the good old all-American mutt or mixed breed dog’s heritage was simply a matter of guesswork and conjecture, but DNA testing is now available at the Animal Welfare Association (AWA) in Voorhees NJ and this now gives more precise information about your beloved four-legged family member.

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Owners of mixed-breed dogs can learn their pet’s breed history through a blood test or a do-it-yourself saliva test presently available at AWA. A dog’s breeding helps to explain a lot about certain behaviors, personality traits and even health conditions.

AWA ran a contest to guess the DNA-lineage of an AWA shelter dog. The results are in and it turns out he comes from a White Swiss Shepherd, an American Foxhound and a Finnish Spitz.

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AWA’s Clinic Manager Judi Russo explained how your dog’s breed history can help to create a tailored care program to target training, become aware of special veterinary and nutritional needs, and plan exercise activities that can make your dog happier and healthier.

It’s a win-win situation as it gives you the opportunity to learn more about your best friend, while a few dollars from each sale goes toward helping provide life-saving services for AWA’s shelter pets. The cost for a saliva test is $75 and $125 for a blood test.

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Contact the AWA clinic at or for more information on testing your dog.