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Hair Analysis Lab

Hair analysis is a tricky thing to do. There are definitely differences between species, but they are very similar. In this lab, we compared the the hairs of humans, cats, and dogs. The main difference between the human hair and the cat and dog hairs was that the human hair was much thicker. This is an easy difference to spot when identifying a hair. However, the cat and dog hairs were very similar. They were both very thin, and looked woven. The cat hair was transparent and the dig hair was brown, but that was just the color of the animal. Cat hair could also be brown and vice versa. I learned from this lab that determining that a hair is human is not hard because it is thicker and not woven like the cat and dog hair. However, determining the difference between cat and dog hairs is not as easy.

Additionally, a human hair is not a good identifier if the root is not present, which is another difficulty in hair analysis. Without the root, the hair contains no DNA to identify a person. As I learned in this lab, it is easy to pull out a hair without the root, so a hair found at a crime scene could easily not have a root too. Hair analysis is tricky because it is not always a scourge of DNA, and without that, it only identifies hair color. This lab taught me that hair analysis is not as easy at it may seem.

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