It’s common knowledge that seven dog years equals one human year. What you might not realize is that this isn’t exactly accurate: a dog doesn’t really age seven times faster than a human. A recent study found a better way to calculate your dog’s age.
The old way to calculate your dog’s age
For the longest time all you had to do to figure out your dog’s age (in dog years, that is) was multiply her actual age by seven. It was generally accepted that the average dog aged an equivalent of seven years every 356 days. Thus, your two-year-old dog was roughly 14 years old in dog years.
The math wasn’t perfect, and the actual lifespan of your dog depends on things like size, breed, nutrition, exercise, and vet care. It also just depends on the individual dog. For example the average lifespan for a Goldendoodle is between 10 and 15 years, but your Goldendoodle could live longer.
While a seven to one ratio is easy to remember, recent research found a better way to figure out how old your dog is.
The new way to calculate your dog’s age
Geneticist Trey Ideker from the University of California, San Diego, among other researchers, identified a new way to determine how old your dog is by examining the chemical changes that occur in DNA sequences over time. They looked at the genomes of 104 Labrador retrievers between 4 weeks of age to 16 years old.
Their research found that Labrador retriever DNA and human DNA showed similar age-indicating changes. This allowed the researchers to sync a dog’s rate of aging with the human epigenetic clock (a biochemical test that measures age).
The new dog age formula works for dogs over 12 months of age.
So here it is —
16 ln(dog age)+31
Take the natural logarithm of your dog’s real age, multiply that number by 16, and then add 31.
Here’s an example for a dog that’s 2 years old.
age = 42
It turns out that dogs age more rapidly in their first few months of life and their aging slows as they get older. According to the new dog age formula, your two-year-old dog isn’t 14 in dog years, but over 42 years!
But that’s OK because it also means that your 14 year old dog isn’t actually 98 in dog years, but closer to 73.
Maybe your dog just aged a few decades after reading this post, or maybe you’re looking for a new furry friend to grow old with! We have Goldendoodle puppies available for sale in Arkansas. Contact Platinum Goldies online or call 501-514-1026.