SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— If you were to look at a dog without knowing its history it would be very difficult to identify its breed. According to Dr. Jennifer Scarlett with the SF SPCA, statistics show even 5,000 dog experts guessed the wrong breed of dog 70 percent of the time.

“If you think about it, purebreds derive from mixed-breed dogs and what we find is that very few traits really hold out once you start to mix breeds. Sometimes with something extreme like a flat face of a bulldog or a an extreme curl of a pug’s tail; those will hang on, but for the most part dogs will tend to revert to the 40 pound tan dog,” Scarlett said.

Another big misconception is that you can decipher the breed of a dog based on its behavior.

“Most dogs nowadays are bred for looks or confirmation, not for their breed. Even when you try to breed for behavior that’s very difficult, which is why we start to look at dogs and assess them by their individual behavior, not by what we predict by breed.”

For more information on dogs and breeds and how you can adopt a pet, visit sfspca.org

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