Puppy DNA/Identical twins - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-04-2011, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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Puppy DNA/Identical twins

I've always wondered how much DNA varies from one littermate to the other? Assuming the same sire for all litter mates.
With human identical twins, if one set has children with another set, their offspring are technically (genetically) brother and sister, not cousins, because their parents have interchangeable DNA.
Do identical twin puppies exist? Has anyone ever even checked for this?
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-04-2011, 04:31 PM
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Half brothers and sisters... unless the twins share spouses.

Yes. I have thought about that because my father has a twin brother. If some day I need a bone marrow donor... I'll contact my cousins, though with the half sisters my father had been spreading around it should be enough.

Twin puppies does exist. I remember hearing a breeder talking about witnessing them. She didn't need a DNA test because she was assisting the birth and she herself removed both puppies from the same sac.

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-04-2011, 04:33 PM
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I don't really know thats a really good question! Probably anything is possible!

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-04-2011, 05:04 PM
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There is a recent thread going on another board on this subject, I thought it was interesting!

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-11-2011, 08:06 PM
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Same sac they would be identical twins. If you were to study reproduction, you learn when fertilization occurs and cell division starts. Human identical twins are born in the same amniotic sac. One egg divides into two. Some times humans ovulate two eggs and they are fertilized, these are not identical and each has its own sac. I am not positive, but I would think it would be the same in dogs. Same sac, identical. When the chromosomes start dividing and forming pairs they determine characteristics of each pup. I am sure several of those pairs are the same, but not all. The canine has 76 autosomal and 2 sexual chromosomes. When the zygote(first cell) forms at fertilization that is where all the chromosomes already are. If that zygote splits in two you have an identical twin. Unless a mutation occurs after the split.

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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-11-2011, 08:16 PM
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This is an interesting question, and I have also wondered about it. But I do believe it's possible. My friend has a dog who is a mixed breed, some sort of husky mix- she looks like a mix of husky, greyhound, and gsd if I had to fathom a guess. I saw another dog that was absolutley idenctical to her, which is so strange considering her unique look. EVERYTHING looked the same on this dog, which was also a female. Everything from her build, to coloring, to markings- a very subtle white tip on her tail...to the way it curled and the size and set of her ears-which would be understandable with a purebred dog, but a mix? It was really interesting, and shocking to see!

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-11-2011, 08:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jax's Mom View Post
I've always wondered how much DNA varies from one littermate to the other? Assuming the same sire for all litter mates.
With human identical twins, if one set has children with another set, their offspring are technically (genetically) brother and sister, not cousins, because their parents have interchangeable DNA.
Do identical twin puppies exist? Has anyone ever even checked for this?
The biology of siblings is the same whether you're talking about animals that have litters like dogs or animals that have solo offspring like humans usually do.

Regular littermates, assuming the same sire, are genetically the same as a regular brother/sister or fraternal twin. A different sperm/egg pair for each puppy/sibling.

I'm sure identical twin puppies do exist. It would happen the same way it happens with humans: after the egg is fertilized, it splits into two zygotes, creating two genetically identical individuals.


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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-11-2011, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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I was more curious about whether or not it was possible for canine eggs to split and survive? I don't see why not, but evidently the canine genome hasn't been mapped out enough to actually prove identical twins exist at all.
I read somewhere that there is another type of twin that's a "half identical" twin where the egg splits and the twins become genetic clones of the mother/father.
I thought it might be interesting for breeders to know if one if their exceptional dogs had a clone around somewhere that could also be bred...
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-11-2011, 09:29 PM
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I read somewhere that there is another type of twin that's a "half identical" twin where the egg splits and the twins become genetic clones of the mother/father.
.
If I'm understanding what you're talking about, it's not possible, since each egg cell and sperm cell only has half of the parent's genes.


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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-11-2011, 09:52 PM
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I did have identical twin pups -- took them out of one sack and took a picture of them on the blanket with a Y shaped umbilical cord still attached . Two points , one to each pups belly twisting together to end up as one cord .

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