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ASR DNA Testing and Search of Lab Database FAQs

Published Date: Jun 28, 2019

Frequently Asked Questions

DNA Testing and Search of Lab Database

I bought a horse whose identity is unknown, can I DNA test him to find out who he is?

You can order a DNA kit from the registry and pull 30 - 50 hairs from the horses’ mane or tail and send to the UC Davis Veterinary Genetics Lab.  The lab staff will DNA type the horse and can do a search of their database for a possible matching DNA type.  The fee for the DNA kit is $50 and the fee for a search of the lab’s database for a matching DNA type is $100.  The Registry makes no warranty that a match will be found since it's possible that the horse was not DNA tested and so a DNA type may not be on file with the lab.

Older horses may be registered but not necessarily have a DNA type on file.  DNA testing to confirm parentage was made mandatory for registration of all foals/horses beginning in 2003.  Blood typing was required prior to 2003.  For horses blood typed in 1992 and later, a frozen blood serum sample was stored at the University of Kentucky Genetic Testing Lab available for conversion to DNA for parentage confirmation for a $50 fee.  For horses DNA typed by hair, part of the hair samples are stored at the testing lab.  Note: blood typing results cannot be compared to DNA testing results.

How long are Blood typing and DNA results kept on file?

All blood typing and DNA results are retained by the testing labs as well as by the Registry indefinitely.

Will a lab search identify the sire and dam of my horse?

The lab will only do a search for an exact DNA matching type – they will not search for a possible sire and/or dam or for lineage.  If you happen to have information such as the name of the barn the horse came from or the names of the previous owner(s) and/or breeder(s), then the lab can check a small number of stallions and mares associated with these entities as the possible parents.

If the lab is able to identify my horse, can I transfer ownership into my name?

If the lab is able to identify your horse, the Registry will provide you with contact information for the last recorded owner and you can ask him/her to assist with updating the chain of ownership.  If you are unable to obtain the signature of the recorded owner then ASR Rule Section V. E titled “Transfer without signature of Recorded Owner” may apply.


Please feel free to contact Katriona Adams directly at k.adams@asha.net or at (859) 259-3885 with any questions.

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