Embark Dog DNA Test: Decoding Your Dog’s Identification

Embark DNA Test Review

For many pet owners who have rescued dogs or adopted them from shelters, you might be wondering about their history. There could be assumptions about a dog’s breed just by visual cues, but that doesn’t give you a definite answer.

If you’re one of those people, have you considered getting a dog DNA test kit? But why do you need to know about a dog’s history or genetic makeup anyway? Well, personally, I hope to understand my dog and his quirks better.

Fortunately, with the scientific advancement and research at Embark, learning more about your dog’s DNA has never been easier – and it’s possible to do it in the comfort of your home.

What Is an Embark Dog DNA Test Kit?

The Embark Dog DNA test kits were developed by a group of brilliant veterinarians in partnership with Cornell University. These test kits aim to uncover a dog’s genetic makeup and their genetic health conditions.

By far, it’s the most accurate and comprehensive dog DNA test kits out there in the market that reveals an extensive list of your dog’s profile. The procedures are made easy, and the results come in fast.

All I had to do was perform a cheek-swab test, using the kit they provided for my dog. It took about three weeks to get the results, which was quite impressive.

If you want to purchase an Embark Dog DNA Test Kit, you can buy them here on their official website:

Which DNA Kit Is Right for You?


Breed Identification Kit


Embark Breed ID Kit

$129

★★★★★ 4.9 (480+ Reviews)

Discover your dog’s ancestry and breed details.

  • Scan 350+ Breeds, Types, and Varieties
  • Explore Your Dog’s Family Tree
  • Find Your Dog’s Siblings and Relatives in the Database
  • Scientific Discoveries + Research

Breed + Health Kit


Embark Breed + Health Kit

$199

★★★★★ 4.8 (7880+ Reviews)

A complete picture of your pup’s genetic health and breed mix.

  • Scan 190+ Genetic Health Conditions
  • Test for 20+ Physical Tests
  • Inbreeding Score
  • Scan 350+ Breeds, Types, and Varieties
  • Explore Your Dog’s Family Tree
  • Find Your Dog’s Siblings and Relatives in the Database
  • Scientific Discoveries + Research

Discount Codes

Embark is having a Fall Sale: Get $30 off Breed + Health Kits with CODE: FALL30 (expires on October 31, 2020). Use this link to take advantage of this offer.

Have multiple dogs? Bundle and save when you buy additional Embark kits:

  • Save 10% when you buy 2 Breed + Health kits with Coupon Code: MULTIPACK2
  • Save 15% when you buy 3 Breed + Health kits with Coupon Code: MULTIPACK3
  • Save 20% when you buy 4+ Breed + Health kits with Coupon Code: MULTIPACK4

Use this link to take advantage of these offers and get the best possible pricing from Embark.

What Makes Embark the Best Dog DNA Test?

In comparison to other test kits out there, Embark offers a long list of essential features that might not be included in other brands, such as:

  • Most accurate breed identification with over 350 breeds, types, and varieties tested. Check the breed list here.
  • Tests for over 190 health conditions. Check the health condition list here.
  • More than 20 physical trait tests. Check the traits list here.
  • Uses over twice as much genetic information to accurately determine your dog’s breeds.
  • The world’s only canine relative finder.
  • Developed by Dr. Adam Boyko, a leading dog geneticist and professor at Cornell University.
  • Contribute to scientific discovery to help end preventable diseases in dogs.
  • Updates to results whenever possible.
  • Highest rated test on the market.
  • Highly specialized veterinarians and canine geneticists on-staff to answer questions.

Why Do You Need This Test?

Some people will ask, or maybe you’re wondering too, why do you need to know your dog’s DNA anyway? Well, there are a couple of valid reasons why you need to learn more about your dog’s DNA. Personally, it’s also an exciting thing to know about my dog’s history.

Health Evaluation

Americans spend on average over $400 per dog in veterinary expenses each year, and this amount increases as a dog gets older.

The Embark DNA test results help you prepare in advance for numerous possible genetic health conditions, allowing you to take preventative steps to avoid costly treatments later on.

It also helps to reduce the likelihood you’ll face expensive bills for avoidable clinical or genetic tests later on if symptoms of these conditions develop in your dog.

Adult Size

If you recently adopted a puppy, doing the test kit could give you a better idea for things that need long-term planning, such as the size of the crate you need or if they require a big garden area to run around.

Obedience and Training

Are you wondering why your dog has a habit of retrieving things but looks nothing like a Golden Retriever? Or why do they act vigilantly towards other animals like cats and squirrels?

Well, some dogs have characteristics that are specific to their breed. If you discover parts of your dog’s identity, this will help train them more effectively.

How Does It Work?

Inside Embark Kit
The inside of the test kit with a swab, instructions and a return envelope.

The procedure is painless with Embark. After purchasing your test kit, you just need to follow the given instructions, and you’re good to go.

Step 1: Activate – Register your kit with your profile using the code included in the kit.

Step 2: Swab – Before you can find out about your dog’s DNA, Embark needs a DNA sample via saliva. Since you can’t really teach a dog to spit, you need to acquire this with a cheek-swab sample. It’s easy, painless, and no trip to the vet required.

Step 3: Mail – After collecting the sample, pack it away in the self-addressed envelope they provided. See? Easy peasy. This should take you less than 10 minutes to do.

Get Your Results – Then, the waiting part begins. Embark sends an email once they receive the sample and updates you with the progress. It should take three to five weeks before they can process and notify you of the result. In my case, it took approximately three weeks.

Embark results example
Madison’s Embark results. She is an Aussie Heeler mix.

My Overall Experience

After purchasing the kit, getting the swab sample was fairly easy and can easily be done by anyone. The time that I had to wait for the test result was pretty quick, considering that they would be doing thorough research.

It also helped that they keep you updated about the progress of the swab test through email.

In general, the experience was fun and easy, even though the price of the kits were a little higher than other brands.

However, since we’re dealing with genetics, I don’t mind paying a little extra if it guarantees accurate results. And this is what Embark is consistently known for, their accuracy.

Final Thoughts: Should You Get Embark?

Compared to other dog DNA testing out there in the market, Embark is slightly more expensive. However, if you look at it on both sides, it’s undeniably the most comprehensive at-home test kit out there. I surely got more than what I paid for.

Aside from finding out a dog’s detailed identification results, you also have the option to find out about related health problems that might happen in the future. As a responsible pet owner, these are significant things that I felt I needed to be informed about.

But it doesn’t stop there; the company really upholds their commitment to animals in need, so they have dedicated themselves to providing funding in various animal shelters in America and Nepal.

This is like hitting two birds with one stone. You and your dog get your test results, while other dogs get the help they need.

Embark offers an opportunity to finally be able to unravel your dog’s ancestry. Get yours now and find out everything you need to know about your dog’s identity.