Doggie DNA and Other Mutt Tales

March 5 2009, 10:11 AM

When Will Colosimo adopted Allie from Denver's Basenji Rescue in 2003, he wanted to know what kind of dog Allie really was. Allie didn't seem to have any basenji in her, so Colosimo turned to technology to get an answer. He sent a swab of Allie's cheek saliva to a laboratory and soon learned that Allie is part German shepherd and part dachshund, according to The Associated Press, which noted Colosimo's surprise at the unlikely combination. Karin Hendersin, a Denver market researcher, had a more pressing reason to need an answer. She worried that her dog Splash might be part pit bull, a breed that is banned in the city. Luckily, however, Splash is parts Chinese Shar-Pei, Labrador retriever, and Dalmatian. Tests, like the cheek-swab by MetaMorphix Inc., are pricey--selling for between $70 and $120. But they're the latest rage, especially if your office allows you to bring your dog to work so that you can brag about it. (USA Today notes offices are more accommodating to dogs than ever.) But don't forget a leash. City officials are considering more hefty fines to crack down on leash scofflaws, according to 9News.