Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Embark vs. Wisdom Panel - A DNA Test Review by Dog Mom Katie

With Lucy and Poppy I have now tried two different DNA tests and wanted to do a side by side comparison with my experience.  I know I read many of these when choosing what test to purchase.

Embark Pros
-You get a lot of information from your sample.  Multi-page report, Breed Determination, in-depth trait analysis/explination of genes shown, a dog tag linked to your pets account, health screening (158 diseases checked), "Wolfiness Score", and the MDR1 check.
-As new genes are discovered your pets sample is checked as long as the sample is still good.
-Website is fully functional and very well laid out.
-Download of printable 8.5 by 11 report available.
-The returning of the sample was quite elaborate.  After use the swab was placed in a liquid to stabilize the sample then the lid screwed on.  From there the vial was put into a lab bag that was sealed.  That made me feel confident sending the sample back through the mail.

Embark Cons
-Price Point ($199 - unless they are running speicals)
-Long turn around time for results.  Took 6 or so weeks.  Originally told it would take 8 weeks.
-Not able to opt out of the medical screenings to get breed detection, MDR1 check and traits at a reduced cost if you want.

Embark Accuracy
-I felt confident in the results I received. The traits listed were spot on as well.

Wisdom Panel  (4.0) Pros
-Budget Friendly ($84.99 - They are most always running a $10 off coupon)
-Quick turn around time.  Sample received at the lab 10-1-2018 and results landed in my inbox 10-12-18.  Just shy of 2 weeks.
-MDR1 Check
-Ability to upgrade to see more medical screenings by purchasing the kit or as an optional upgrade when your results are received from the basic kit.
-Very simplistic design on the website, which I liked very much!
-Results were laid out nicely in a click-through presentation.
-Download of printable 8.5 by 11 report available.
-Trait Analysis.  I found out my girl has the Merle gene.

Wisdom Panel Cons
-The re-packaging of the swabs seemed a little risky.  Using the swabs then placing them back into their original sleeve.  There was nothing that re-sealed the sleeve.  However it didn't seem to harm the swabs or change the results.

Wisdom Panel Accuracy
-I knew what mix my Poppy was before testing.  After getting the results and it showing the exact mix, I feel extremely confident in Wisdom Panel.  The 37.5% that was mixed (which most people complain about) could definitely come from a mixing of breeds generations far back on the chihuahua side since the sire was a blue merle and merle is not a natural occurring gene in that breed.

If I were ever to do another test I would choose Wisdom Panel.  The "extras" you get with Embark do not justify the cost, in my opinion. Wisdom panel is quicker, very efficient, and the results are very easy to read and understand.

The Momma


  1. Momma used a Wisdom Panel to test Angel Casey's DNA a few years ago. She always thought he was mixed with something, because he didn't have the classic boxer look, but he came back as all boxer! She says she might test me eventually, but she's pretty confident I'm all boxer.

  2. Do you think they'd be able to test my ROYAL DNA?
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx