Why We Don’t Guess Breeds

Written by
APA! Team
March 20, 2024

When we see a dog, we often think, “What kind of dog is that?

But identifying the breed mix of a dog from its appearance has proven to be highly inaccurate.

We have known for decades that even first-generation mixed breed dogs can look dramatically different thanks to Scott and Fuller in 1960.

Research undertaken by Dr. Victoria Voith has concluded that identifying a dog’s breed mix through appearance is often inaccurate with upto a 75% mistake rate.

Dr. Lisa Gunter’s study explained that a validated behavioural assessment would likely be a better way to inform potential adopters about the behaviour of individual dogs.


So why is this important to us?

At Adelaide Pets Alive! our values include responsibility and integrity. We believe that breed labelling is inaccurate and that focusing on a breed can provide a false expectation of behaviour for the new pet owner. Focusing on a breed label can lead to poor adoption matches because a person will speculate how that animal should behave in the home. This can lead to resurrender and compounds confusion for the homeless pet.

It is our responsibility to be truthful and honest, to treat each animal as an individual, to observe the behaviour of each animal and to share this information to the best of our ability with a potential adopter.


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