UCSD Scientists Share a More Accurate Model for Dog Age

UCSD Scientists Share a More Accurate Model for Dog Age. (Photo via unsplash.com)

The University of California San Diego (UCSD) conducted a study revealing that a dog’s age is not precisely calculated as a direct multiple of seven human years.

San Diego, CA (ADH News) – Wondering how old your dog is in human years? It’s a question many pet owners have. Historically, individuals have employed a formula of multiplying a dog’s age by 7 as a reference point. However, it prompts consideration – given the diverse range of dog breeds, body types, and genetics, using a uniform method for calculating dog age raises questions about the accuracy of such results.

In 2020, UCSD reshaped the conversion of dog age and human age through DNA Methylome. The researchers studied and analyzed the genetic data of about 100 Labrador puppies and adult dogs and compared them with 320 humans between 1 and 103. They found that dog age is not directly equal to human age multiplied by 7.

The results show that a one-year-old dog is equivalent to 30 human years old, a dog about to turn 4 years old is equivalent to 54 human years old, and a dog about to turn 14 years old is about 70 years old. Want to know how old a dog is in human years? The team proposed a method with more accurate numbers. Function: human_age = 16 ln(dog_age) + 31

“Dogs are an interesting animal to study,” said senior author Trey Ideker, PhD, professor at UC San Diego School of Medicine and Moores Cancer Center.

“Given how closely they live with us, perhaps more than any other animal, a dog’s environmental and chemical exposures are very similar to humans, and they receive nearly the same levels of health care. It’s also important that we better understand their aging process, as veterinarians frequently use the old 1:7 years ratio to determine a dog’s age and use that information to guide diagnostic and treatment decisions,” Ideker said.

On the other hand, some breeds of dogs can live longer, some breeds cannot, and lifespan is related to body size; small dogs have a longer lifespan, and large dogs have a shorter lifespan. For example, the Beagle is a relatively long-lived dog, with an average lifespan of 12 to 15 years; the Bordeauxdog is a relatively short-lived dog, with an average lifespan of 5 to 8 years.

In 2016, a study from the University of Kansas showed that dogs are not necessarily 7 times as old as humans, and dogs age at different rates at different stages of growth. For example, different dog breeds have different adult stages, some of which are very long and some are very short, making it difficult to compare with human age.

From the UCSD study, it can be found that dogs are much older than people. ​If you have a pet dog, please cherish it and love it. Because it does not live long, it ages quickly, but most of its life is left to the owner.

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