DNA Cache at Home Instructions

Congratulations! You are taking part in the protection and maintenance of the health of the Bichon Frise now and in years to the future. You now have the opportunity to collect and store at home DNA for genetic research on as many generations as possible, dead or alive. Collecting DNA on parents and siblings of dogs affected by late-onset genetic diseases is difficult, but storing DNA at home from current and future generations will help facilitate this process.

By receiving your DNA collection kit, you pledge to record annually the health level for each dog swabbed. You pledge to monitor bichonhealth.org website (at least three times yearly) for any promising research and call for DNA samples, and when it is needed, volunteer needed swabs for research to be used at the discretion of the researching body.

Enclosed in the kit you received is:

  1. A large envelope for storage of swabs for litters
  2. Small envelopes for storage of swabs for individual dogs/puppies
  3. 5 sterile swabs per dog/puppy
  4. Special archival labels for each swab that will identify the dog/puppy
  5. Larger labels to identify a litter

Steps to develop a DNA cache at home for your Bichons:

  1. Fill out 5 labels for one dog and attach to 5 swabs.
  2. Place another label on a letter-sized envelope and fill it out to identify the same dog.
  3. Twirl one swab on the inside of the cheek for 10 seconds to collect mucosal cells.
  4. Repeat this process for the other 4 swabs.
  5. Allow the 5 swabs to air-dry for at least 10 seconds.
  6. Replace the 5 swabs in the original packages. Do not seal the package in any way.
  7. Place the 5 swabs in the envelope that is identified with the correct label for that particular dog. Do not seal the envelope.
  8. Repeat this process for all puppies in each litter or any Bichons that you have bred, adults or puppies.
  9. If you are collecting DNA on a litter, place the labeled, unsealed envelopes that each contain 5 swabs in the large envelope. Attach one of the larger labels to this large envelope and fill in the information for that litter. Use this envelope to record health issues and/or any genetic phenotype faults (i.e. cow-hocked, fiddle front) that are apparent now or that develop in the future for any of the puppies in this litter.
  10. Store large litter envelopes and smaller individual dog envelopes in a well-ventilated area such as a drawer, file cabinet, cardboard box, or any non-airtight container, at room temperature.

Do not seal any envelopes or swab packages and do not place any swabs or envelopes in plastic bags. Over time DNA will be destroyed with exposure to any moisture.