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Penn Vet Free Dog & Cat Vaccination Clinic Credit: Yolanda Chen

A Penn Vet study identified differences between dog breeds based on gene variation. The study examined 101 dog breeds and 131 genetic variants related to behavior, according to the University of Washington news

The study, which was published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, revealed that dog breed disposition depends on their genome, according to Penn Today. Penn Vet ethics and animal welfare professor James Serpell, along with other university researchers, studied some behaviors including aggression, hunting proficiency, and companionship.

Through this questionnaire, the study examined data from 14,000 dogs out of the pool of 50,000 survey submissions from dog owners. 

The study suggested that 60 to 70 percent of behavioral traits can be attributed to variation in genetics and heritability. 

“So for trainability, you’re thinking of breeds like border collies that have to respond to human signals to accomplish complicated tasks," Serpell, who co-authored the study, told Penn Today. "For chasing behavior you can think of something like a greyhound, which is innately predisposed to chase anything that runs." 

Much of this data was established through the Canine Behavioral Assessment and Research Questionnaire, which was a survey completed by dog owners about their pet’s behaviors, Penn Today reported. 

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