Engineering 101

How Long Will Your Dog Live?

The Dog Aging Project is recruiting dogs of all ages to take part in creating a vast, open-source dataset about canine health and longevity. We don’t know much about healthy aging for our companion dogs beyond big dogs age fastest (approximately 10x more quickly than humans), while small breeds can reach 20 years old, with “dog years” about 5x human years.

The Dog Aging Project is studying tens of thousands of dogs of all sizes, breeds, and backgrounds to develop a thorough understanding of canine aging. They will arm veterinarians and scientists with the tools to assess how well a specific dog is aging and set the stage for further research into healthy aging. Details of the project are in an article published in the current issue of the journal Nature.

One of their most intriguing avenues of inquiry will analyze the DNA of exceptionally long-lived dogs, the “super-centenarians” of the dog world.

The Dog Aging Project (DAP) expects to run for at least 10 years, and more than 32,000 dogs have joined the “DAP Pack” so far. Researchers want to look at the 300 oldest dogs in the Pack to see if they can identify the keys to their longevity. Within a few months, the team plans to open their enormous dataset — fully anonymized — to share with scientists worldwide.

For more information or to learn how to enroll your dog in the ongoing project, visit https://dogagingproject.org.

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