There are some cat owners who couldn’t care less about their cat’s lineage. In contrast, there are other cat owners who can be very curious about such matters, which is perhaps unsurprising when a similar range of opinions can be found in people when it comes to our own lineages. Regardless, those who want to know more about how their cats came into existence should know that there is now a cat DNA test kit that can be used at home called Basepaws.
What Is Basepaws?
For those who are curious, Basepaws is pretty much what most people would expect. In short, interested individuals can get a kit containing either a swab or a piece of tape. The kits containing a swab are meant to be used to collect material from hairless cats, while the kits containing a piece of tape are meant to be used to collect material from other cat breeds that are not so lacking in that regard. Once the material has been collected, interested individuals can send it out to the lab for cat DNA testing. In about 8 to 12 weeks, they should be able to get a report about their cat’s breed as well as other information about their cat’s background, which in time, will be expanded to include information about their health as well as other important characteristics.
Assuming that Basepaws can live up to its promises, it is a very interesting service for people who want to know as much about how their cats came into existence as possible. Moreover, it is an excellent example of how we are building a better and better understanding of our feline companions on the most fundamental level. Something that could enable future cat owners to provide their cats with better treatment than otherwise possible because of how genetic factors can influence health as well as other important matters.
What Are Some Considerations to Keep In Mind Before Using Basepaws?
Of course, the issue is whether Basepaws can live up to its promises or not. So far, there hasn’t been a huge investigation into Basepaws results because it is still such a new service, meaning that it is much too soon to say anything concrete about it in particular. However, consumer DNA testing has been a thing for some time, which has produced some precautionary information that interested individuals might want to keep in mind before making the purchase.
In short, consumer DNA testing is much more streamlined compared to the kind of DNA testing that happens in clinical labs. This is unsurprising because consumer DNA testing is big business, meaning that there are a lot of samples that need to be processed as soon as possible. Unfortunately, the streamlining means that there is a corresponding loss of accuracy, which is so bad that one study has estimated a 40 percent chance of error. In other words, consumer DNA testing is far from being perfectly accurate, which is why interested individuals might want to take the results of such with some salt.
Fortunately, there are some things that interested individuals can do to minimize their chances of coming to a wrong conclusion while still making use of such services. In short, they should make sure to read through the fine print for such services, thus making sure that they understand exactly what they are getting as well as what that means for them from a more practical perspective. This can be challenging because there is going to be a fair amount of technical jargon involved, but since DNA testing is capable of turning up important information, interested individuals should make sure that they know exactly how much they can trust the results that are sent to them. This way and only this way, they can use consumer DNA testing in a responsible manner for the sake of satisfying their personal curiosity.
With that said, it will be interesting to see how Basepaws turns out in the time to come. After all, just because most consumer DNA testing can be a bit unreliable, it doesn’t mean that is true for all of the service providers that can be found out there. As a result, it is still much too soon to make judgments about Basepaws’s degree of reliability.